Diagnosing the Bunion
Are you the victim of improper shoes? Shoes that fit too tight around the edges, or perhaps squeezed your toes into …dare I say it, a bunion! Well, you’re not alone. In fact, millions of people across the world have a medical condition often referred to as bunions. So what exactly is a bunion?
According to healthyfeetstore.com, “a foot bunion is a condition of bony deformity of the joint at the base of the big toe.” In medical terms it is referred to as a “hallux abducto valgus.” But we’ll just call it a bunion for now. It is recognizable if the big toe or telltale bone protrudes inwards. This is actually a condition when someone suffers from bony prominence. As a result of the direction of the bone, the big toe pushes outwards on the first metatarsal bone beyond normal limits (also referred to as a metatarsophalangeal joint) which is the bone directly behind the biggest toe. These can also occur on the little toe and fifth metatarsal which is known as a bunionette. Pain can be felt during walking and exercising. The pain is due to a joint where the toe bends in normal walking which causes the entire body weight to rest on the bunion during every single step. Ouch!
Best Woman’s Shoes for Bunions Comparison
Best Men’s Shoes for Bunions Comparison
Identifying the Bunion
There are many different conditions that appear on the foot. From Plantar Fiscitis to corns, and blisters, a bunion is often overlooked. What defines a bunion is that it remains permanent and appears on a specific spot on the edge of foot while a blister or a corn can appear nearly anywhere and a Plantar Fiscitis is at the bottom of the foot. A bony protuberance on the joint of the large toe may look like puffiness while angling in towards its adjacent toe. Due to the angle, the joint is affected and tends to angle out. When this shape occurs, shoes once provided comfort will no longer be able to support the new structure of the foot. This causes the bunion to rub against the shoe thus causing pressure on the toe bunion leading to an uncomfortable feeling and even pain.
Causes of Bunions
While there are many causes of bunions, the most popular is an ill fitted shoe. By wearing tight fitting shoes, for a long period of time, toes are often pressed on and forced into an angle. A bunion is often the result of this angle.
Choosing The Right Shoe for You: Activities
In order to identify the best shoe for your feet, it is necessary to write down all the activities you perform throughout the day. While the bunion itself poses a problem, the activities are what put pressure on the bunion therefore the proper is absolutely necessary to relieve pain.
If your day to day routine includes a lot of walking or standing, one of the above shoes may be ideal. However, many athletes also suffer from bunions. For those who are runners or dancers, there are a variety of options in footwear for comfort. While a customization option is typically available, it is worth looking for more expensive shoes in different styles.
Looks over Comfort or Comfort over Looks?
It’s true, the bunion shoe is no high heel, and not always the first choice when it comes to the fashionable option. In order to provide comfort these shoes have a boxy yet spacious shape. The upper section is made to be stretchy and allow the toes an area to roam.
Best Shoes for Bunions in 2017
Luckily, for those of us that suffer from bunions or bunionettes, there are an array of awesome designers that have created foot friendly shoes. We have compiled a list of the best shoes for bunions. Many of these comfortable shoes not only help ease the pain of a bunion, but they can also disguise it, and some are even fashionable! First things first, in order to identify the proper shoe fit, you must write down all of the activities you perform. Once you have identified the activities performed throughout the day that require shoes, finding the best shoe for your bunion will be a lot easier.
Choosing the Right Shoe for You: Mary Janes
One of the best shoes for bunions by far is the classic Mary Jane shoe. These are the perfect shoes for going to work, on a date, or out for a casual day around town. Mary Jane shoes look great with nearly anything from dresses to black pants, and even high waisted shorts.
Mary Jane Shoes are traditional and very popular for women with bunions. The shoe provides a belt rather than a shoe lace which allows for a solid upper section and plenty of toe area. The space for the toes creates a perfect blend of comfort for those who prefer a clog-type shoe. In addition, it has an advanced back instead of one that is opened. Mary Jane shoes provide a wide toe box which do an excellent job as the best shoes for bunions. Nevertheless, the Mary Jane shoe doesn’t lack space at all.
Choosing the Right Shoe for You: Clogs
While many of us think of clogs as dancing shoes, they are well known in the bunion market for their wide toe box. The classic Clog design has been around for centuries, yet 2016 has welcomed the timeless shoe as a simplistic and supportive design. Clogs are well known to provide comfort for long periods of time. These are an excellent option for those in retail who have to stand on their feet all day. Many nurses use clogs as their go-to hospital shoe considering they are doing a great deal of walking and standing on solid surfaces throughout the day. Considering these shoes do not come with orthotic insoles, they are not meant for running or walking especially over rocky surfaces. So, if your planning on walking or standing on a smooth surface for awhile then these are an optimal choice of shoe.
Choosing the Right Shoe for You: Rocker Bottom Shoes
Rocker Bottom Shoes AKA toning or rocker sole shoes has the ability of taking pressure of the toe and putting it elsewhere. The Rocker Bottom Shoes helps walking with ease using by providing an arch where the foot can rock forwards almost automatically during each step. The thick base cushioned rocker sole takes weight relieves the front foot and toes of weight. Rocker Bottom Shoes they are one of the best shoes for bunions considering they have the ability to relieve pain and pressure from the first metatarsal bone.
Choosing the Right Shoe for You: Stretch Shoes
Often, some of the best shoes for bunions are ones that are prescribed or made to custom fit. While many of these may not appeal to you, one more shoe is one whose uppers are created with a stretchy material that molds to the foot. With Stretch Shoes, there are options to to insert custom made insoles for bunions if required. Furthermore, the shoes won’t get too tight due to their stretchy flexible material. These soft stretchy shoes are ideal for the workplace. The best part is, they are so comfortable, even more so than most slippers!
Choosing the Right Shoe for You: Nike Studio Wrap
If your planning on doing ballet, or yoga, the Nike Studio Wrap offers great support as well as coverage for bunions. They are also good for athletes and indoor activities. These fashionable wraps are adjustable which allows athletes to alleviate pressure where needed, and move them to their desired comfort while being active. Did I mention they cover the entire bunion?
Choosing the Right Shoe for You: Ankle Boots
Many ankle boots have a reputation as foot friendly boots with wide toe boxes. With Autumn in full swing, maroon, brown, and charcoals are popular ankle bootie choices. Shoes such as Nordstrom’s Bussola have a reputation for a foot friendly design. Their ankle boot brand has a comfortable microsuede upper which is complemented by a rounded toe and a removable insole. Booties look good with nearly anything from jeans to leggings as well as leg warmers and peacoats. Now you can bring your bunions on a date and look cute too!
Choosing the Right Shoe for You: Fly London Yama
This particular style works great for bunions. It has a round and wide toe box and a low heel.
Oh, and it’s a totally fashion forward.
Choosing the Right Shoe for You: Army Glam Boot
This suitable shoe comes in a variety of colors such as teal and dark green as well as neutrals like gray and stone. They are known to provide a secure fit of a lace-up boot in addition to a wider toe box and soft leather edges. Plus, The EVA foam cushioned and moderate arch support makes the Bethany an ideal shoe for long days.
Choosing the Right Shoe for You: Cordani footwear
is made for city walking–chic yet sturdy, keeping all-day comfort in mind. The curved line of the Mara’s sole provides a “rocker” effect which helps to propel the foot forward alleviating pressure on the forefoot.
Choosing the Right Shoe for You: Clark’s Cloudsteppers
Sillian Jetay Cloud Steppers has a brand new line of OrthoLite® cushioned footbeds, textile uppers, soft fabric linings and lightweight soles that are available in a variety of widths.
Choosing the Right Shoe for You: Best Boots for Bunions
It’s boot season, and believe it or not their are boots for bunions. Search for boots with a wide toe box for wiggle room, and soft interior for comfort and warmth. Opt for a mid size boot so feet as room to move. While boots are not always ideal, they are often necessary to keep feet warm during cold weather and outdoor activities.
Choosing the Right Shoe for You: Aerosoles Sol
For individuals who enjoy simplicity and comfort, Aersoles sol are true slice of heaven for your feat. They are chic and simple and come in a variety of colors. The Sol Music line provides soft leather uppers as well as sueded cushioned insoles and flexible rubber composition on the exterior. These are great options for school or work.
Orthofeet shoes are designed to relieve foot pain and discomfort from bunions
Over-the-counter arch support inserts are an easy way that help many people avoid the pain of a bunion. It really depends on the foot and the bunion. As people get older, a semi-soft orthoses is often prescribed. These are an excellent option for modified support to control the foot from moving when it hits the ground further protecting the toe and joints. Orthotic insoles with anatomical arch support position the foot properly, lessening the protruding effect of bunions. These shoes feel soft and their non-binding upper reduces pressure on the bunions. Orthofeet shoes are seam-free and come with a soft inside that has foam padding to enhance comfort. Other models include the Extra depth design which provides a relaxed fit as well as enough room so the toe can move. The light-weight soles aid to soften steps, improve foot motion, and ease stress on joints.
Choosing the Right Shoe for You: Sandals
Sandals are a great option since there is no need to confine the feet. Just make sure the sole is supportive. Despite their easy going nature, they are not always appropriate for professional work settings or active activities. However, if you find one with aero soft material, then you will be walking on clouds all day.
The Wellrox Austin is a soft comfortable sandal with padded toe separators. The exterior has a durable outsole with a nice grip on the ground. Separating the toes is very beneficial for those with bunions. The uppers are made from flexible leather while the midsole provides a cushion making it a great shoe to wear everyday. The unique separators secure feet when walking and provide alignment to the toes thus improving balance and equilibrium. By having proper toe form, pain is reduced in the feet, knees, ankles, and the back.
Choosing the Right Shoe for You: Running Shoes
Running shoes and sneakers can provide a lot of comfort to persons with bunions. These shoes tend to have an open spacious toe box which allow the toes to be free of friction and rubbing. Typically, running shoes have stretchy sides that won’t resist when weight is put on them. Furthermore, the top of shoe is typically seamless thus reducing pain. Nike Runners are a must have for anyone with bunions. They are light weight, have stretchy material, and provide great support for your foot. New Balance is another top rated brand for bunions. Both running shoes come in a variety of styles and colors. Just make sure to get the right size!
Choosing the Right Shoe for You: Work Shoes & Boots
While work shoes and boots are often created with stiff leather material, they tend to have a great shape for the bunion. Boots are often the boxy type shape or wide-fit which provides the toe joints with space for the bunion. Just make sure the shoe can hold the heel in place and does let the foot slide forward.
Should You Keep Your Old Shoes?
Forget about your old shoes especially if they are the the direct cause of the bunion. Typically, the best shoes are orthopedic shoes which we will go into the next section. If you already own a pair then make sure they have room for the bunion and are not putting any pressure on it. If you don’t already have a pair, there are alternatives to make your current shoes more comfortable such as gel pads or linings. Another option is applying moleskin on a daily basis around the bunion to keep it from inflammation. A third option is using a shoe stretcher this may allow you to mold a show that you already own into a spacious shoe for the bunion. A stretcher will make a shoe wider, but may not provide the comfort and desired pressure. Another option for stretching your shoes is the hair dryer DIY. Just try blow drying your shoes and layering them with socks to stretch them out!
Now that we’ve gone over the best shoes for bunions, it’s time to talk about what not to wear
- Avoid shoes that cut off on or next to the bunion. The edges will cause friction and rubbing on your bunions more than other shoes. As a result, you will be in a ton of pain and may experience swelling.
- Don’t wear heels, but if you must-only wear heels for limited amount of time. The more the heels squish your toes together, the faster and bigger the bunion will grow. Heels put a lot of pressure on the bunions due to their sharp downward angle and narrow edges. This can make wearing them extremely painful. If your planning on wearing heels with a bunion make sure to bring another option of shoes such as flats or sandals. After all, your feet will be screaming at you!
- Avoid wearing patent leather at all costs! Patent shoes constrict the foot unlike other stretchy materials. These are the worst for bunions. Not only do they cause bunions, but the stiff material rubs on them as you walk. Oh, and they create some of the worst blisters ever! Try to stick to soft flexible materials that conform with your feet rather then resisting them.
- Opt for buying shoes with wide toe boxes. This can’t be stressed enough. They may appear not as cute on the outside, but inner space makes them an ideal comfortable shoe.
- While the initial cause of many bunions is wearing shoes that are too small, once the bunions have appeared it’s time to go up in shoe size. This allows the toes to and joints to have more room, and just overall have more space.
- Give your feet some love! After a long day of walking with a bunion, fill your tub with some water and treat yourself with a long Epsom salt soak. Foot scrubbers, massages, salt soaks, and pediatric soothing creams can aid in alleviating foot pain!
Now, what are you waiting for? Go treat those bunions! You should now have a full understanding on what bunions are from the causes that created them to the shoes to avoid. Make sure to evaluate your daily activities and read through the different options of boots, sandals, insoles, and flats to find the best shoes for your bunions.