Relieve the pressure on the base of the big toe and resolve the problem.

Bunions – explained

I was horrified to read on the NHS website (usually a reliable if rather conventional source) that the “cause of bunions is unknown“. What Utter Nonsense!!!

We know the cause and have done for decades – excess pressure on the joint at the base of the big toe. This pressure causes the joint to twist out of alignment and swell, causing the typical “bump” as the bones move out to the side and get swollen.

It’s simple:

Poor foot function causes pressure on the joint.

Fix the foot function, relieve the pressure – solve the problem.

Fix the foot

The only way to resolve this issue is to fix the foot function. Now there are complicated ways to do this and simple ways. I’ve always found that simple is best – orthotics.

I know, I know, it’s a dirty word, it conjures visions of huge orthopaedic shoes or insoles so big you can only wear slippers. For Ever (cue dramatic music). Eternally condemned to trainers and ugly shoes.

Or does it? Actually no it doesn’t. Modern orthotics (like the kind I use) are slim, discrete and can be worn in pretty much any shoe, even, gasp, heels! Will they be as effective in 4 inch stiletto Louboutins? No, but my daughter has worn them for over a decade in just about every shoe imaginable, including the strappy sandals at her wedding.


According to that same NHS website “Non-surgical treatments don’t improve the appearance of your foot. Surgery may be considered depending on the level of deformity.”

And that is the point of bunion surgery – to correct the appearance of the foot. Not to treat the symptoms but to correct how it looks.

Let’s be clear – orthotics will relieve the pressure. What surgery does is shave the bone so the bump is smaller. But it DOESN’T fix the problem, it treats the appearance of your foot.

If you don’t correct how you walk then you will, quite simply, walk your bunions back. After all that pain and risk and time on crutches you will have to repeat surgery, again and again and again as you haven’t fixed the problem.

Wouldn’t orthotics be simpler?

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