Mr Nick Savva
Shoes should have a broad toe box with uppers made of a soft pliable material that do not put pressure on the bunion. Leather shoes can be stretched around deformities such as a bunion. Avoid sandals with straps over any prominent boney or tender lumps on your feet.
Orthotics are devices that modify the position of your toes and feet in general, with the aim of reducing pain and improving function. A silicone spacer between the big toe and second toe can be very effective at reducing rubbing. Splints are available that straighten the big toe using the rest of the foot as a splint. These do not prevent bunions occurring, but can reduce the ache. Orthotics can also fit inside your shoe replacing the insert or lining to modify how your foot makes contact with the ground. These can be bought in a chemist or made specifically for you by an Orthotist or Podiatrist.
The vast majority of symptoms from any foot complaint are improved by losing weight.
Surgery is usually reserved for patients in whom symptoms are very intrusive despite exhausting all conservative measures. In most cases it involves one or more osteotomies (bone-cuts) to change the shape of the bones of your big toe. Occasionally joints needed to be fused.