If you're suffering from bunions, you probably already know that certain types of footwear, such as shoes with pointed toes, can make the situation worse. However, relieving bunion pain and discomfort doesn't depend solely on wearing flat, wide shoes. Following are seven other ways that you can help keep bunion pain at bay.
Maintain an Optimal Weight Although carrying excess weight has not been found to be a primary cause of bunion development, it can definitely worsen the pain of existing bunions. After all, most people walk about three times the amount of the circumference of the Earth during their lifetime, and that's a great deal of strain and pressure to put on their feet. Keeping your weight down only makes sense when it comes to relieving bunion and other foot pain.
Massage Your Toes Some people who suffer from bunions claim that massage helps alleviate the pain and discomfort. The massage technique involves firmly-but-gently holding the big toe and pulling it in an outward direction until you can feel increased space in your toe joint. You then push the toes down into its original position and repeat the process for approximately two minutes. Because this helps keep the toe joint flexible, many of those who do this daily report a reduction in the stiffness and pain commonly associate with the presence of bunions.
Use Bunion Pads Beside making certain that your shoes fit well, don't have overly high heels, and provide plenty of room in the toe area, you can help relieve bunion pain and discomfort by using bunion pads. Bunion pads are typically made from silicon, which provides a cool, comfortable cushion that eases pressure against the bunion and helps it from becoming further deformed.
Drink Chamomile Because bunions are primarily inflammations, substances containing anti-inflammatory properties, such as chamomile, can be instrumental in keeping the swelling down. Drinking chamomile tea can help with any type of bodily inflammation. However, standard tea bags are perfect size to use as a poultice on bunions. Simply apply the used teabag to the area for an extra layer of relief -- or, if you really don't care for the taste of chamomile tea, just soak the teabag in water for a few minutes prior to holding it against the area.
Treat with Castor Oil Castor oil also has substantial anti-inflammatory properties. To relieve bunion pain, try soaking a cloth in castor oil and wrapping it around your foot, and use plastic wrap to hold the cloth in place. To help the castor oil soak in, place a hot water bottle over the inflamed area and relax with your foot up for 30 minutes or so while the treatment works its magic.
Take Ibuprofen or Other Anti-Inflammatory Over-the-Counter Drugs When bunion pain and discomfort occur in locations such as your workplace, it may not be possible for you to apply a chamomile tea bag or castor oil compress. However, there are over-the-counter drugs you can take, such as Ibuprofen, that will help reduce the pain and swelling.
Apply Cold Packs Some people find that applying a cold pack to the area helps to relieve the pain and swelling caused by bunions. You can buy cold packs in a drugstore that can be kept in the freezer until you need them, or you can create a simple ice pack by wrapping ice in a washcloth. Whichever you choose, apply the pack to the affected area and sit back and relax for 30 minutes or so. Be sure to choose a time when you're not likely to be interrupted. For more information on how you can reduce bunion pain and discomfort, please contact a local bunion surgery doctor, such as Richard Moy DPY INC, at your earliest convenience.