WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:
A bunion is a bony lump at the base of your big toe. As it grows, it sticks out from the side of your foot and may move your toe out of place.
- NSAIDs: These help decrease swelling and pain. Ask which medicine is right for you and how much to take. Take as directed. NSAIDs can cause stomach bleeding or kidney problems if not taken correctly.
- Take your medicine as directed. Call your primary healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.
Follow up with your primary healthcare provider or podiatrist as directed:
Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.
- Ice your toe: Ice helps decrease swelling and pain. Use an ice pack or put crushed ice in a plastic bag. Cover the ice pack with a towel and place it on your toe for 15 to 20 minutes every hour. Use the ice for as long as directed.
- Separate your big toe at night: Separate the big toe from the others with a foam-rubber pad while you sleep. Use a light elastic bandage to keep the pad in place.
- Use a bunion pad: Wear a thick, ring-shaped pad around and over the bunion to cushion it.
- Wear shoes that fit: Wear wide shoes that have plenty of room for your toes. Do not wear shoes with heels that are higher than 2 inches.
- Wear shoe inserts or arch supports in your shoes: These will decrease pressure on the bunion.
- Stretch your foot each day: This will help decrease pressure and increase foot strength. Ask what foot exercises are best for you.
Contact your primary healthcare provider or podiatrist if:
- You cannot do your daily activities because of the pain.
- You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.
Return to the emergency department if:
- You have severe pain in your toe.
- You cannot put weight on your foot.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.