First of all, be aware that hallux valgus or bunions are foot deformities that cannot disappear over time. Whether some risk factors are avoidable, others can’t be prevented. It is especially the case of heredity, morphological (Egyptian foot, flat or hollow feet) or physiological (age, women) factors.
While it is complicated to avoid the onset of bunions, you can nevertheless prevent bunion pain! EPITACT®, podiatric care expert, has gathered the best advice to prevent bunions from getting worse!
Wear appropriate shoes to prevent bunions
How appropriate shoes can help prevent pain caused by bunions? Shoes have a crucial role in the onset of this bony bump. When they’re not appropriate, they are a major risk factor. The main types of shoes that should be banished are high heels, especially those superior to 5 cm high. Indeed, by transmitting the body weight to the forefoot, they increase traumas on the big toe and metatarsal bones.
To make matters worse, this kind of shoes are often pointy, narrow and tight and both flatter and mistreat the foot. It turns into a living nightmare for your toes! Sometimes, feel free to put on your most beautiful heels if they’re still compatible with your bunion.
Shoe manufacturers increasingly create models that combine aestheticism and foot health. During your next shopping trip, keep an eye open and choose the perfect pair of shoes to prevent bunions from getting worse!
Choose an effective big toe brace
You can use corrective braces to prevent bunion pain and correct the position of your big toe. Because this condition is very common, EPITACT® wanted to find a lasting, comfortable and effective every day solution. This interest resulted in the creation of two complementary bunion correctors with patented technology.
With the flexible bunion corrector for day*, enjoy your daily activities and forget your pain. It protects the bump, absorbs pressure, reduces friction and realigns the toe while walking. For continuous action and relief, EPITACT® has developed the rigid bunion corrector for night* that prevents the bunion from getting worse. This device can be thermoformed, that is to say you can mould it to your own foot shape. It realigns the toe during resting periods and soothes joint and contact pain.
EPITACT® has created another version of the bunion corrector specially dedicated to sports activities*. As it realigns the toe, it prevents pain on the bunion in your shoe and optimises propulsion during walking or running.
Prevent bunion pain with silicone protections
Many light and discreet protections are suitable for all types of shoes and help prevent bunion pain. Since comfort is the main concern of EPITACT®, we have created a special protection made up of smooth and thin fabric*.
It includes a patented silicone gel that spreads pressure, absorbs friction and provides immediate relief in the shoe. This device can be worn daily to prevent pain on the bunion when walking.
Try a few exercises
Some simple daily exercises can prevent rapid progression of a bunion. The first group of exercises helps to improve flexibility of the joint in order to prevent moderate and severe cases of foot bunion. The second group includes exercises to strengthen the muscles of the big toe. They develop the muscles in your foot and give it strength.
Those different exercises can be done at home, without any accessories. For more results, try to do them daily.
Can orthopaedic insoles help for bunion prevention?
The answer is yes; orthopaedic insoles contribute to preventing bunions from getting worse as they provide better distribution of pressure to the forefoot. The foot bunion may be associated with a flat or hollow foot, that is to say an arch of the foot that is excessively flat or curved. These kinds of foot shapes cause postural imbalances and increase the load that is supported by small areas of the forefoot. Therefore, wearing orthopaedic insoles limits the risks of deforming the forefoot and reduces bunion pain(1).
You’d understand that you can’t avoid bunions from forming on your foot but you can prevent bunion pain(2) and rapid progression. The more you follow these pieces of advice, the more you reduce the risk of complications, and the sooner the better!
*These solutions are class I medical devices that bear the CE marking under this regulation. Carefully read the instructions before use. Manufacturer: Millet Innovation. 11/2023
For more details about this general and simplified approach, here are further sources:
(1)Moulodi N, Kamyab M, Farzadi M. A comparison of the hallux valgus angle, range of motion, and patient satisfaction after use of dynamic and static orthoses. The Foot. dec 2019;41:6‑11.
(2)Hurn SE, Matthews BG, Munteanu SE, Menz HB. Effectiveness of non‐surgical interventions for hallux valgus: a systematic review and meta‐analysis. Arthritis Care & Research. 25 march 2021;acr.24603.