-Tim Warner, Sports & Fitness, Director of Testing
Top 3 out of 11 Brands We Tested
(Best Pain Relief)
||Best Full Foot Sleeve
(Compression Sleeve with Ankle Strap)
||Best Gel Toe Separator
(Slip-On Gel Pads)
Best Bunion Corrector
Do you suffer from painful bunions and find your feet feeling uncomfortable throughout the day? If so, a bunion corrector might just be the product to help you. Depending on your level of pain and discomfort, the gentle push and pull of these products can work wonders.
Additionally, if you choose a style with compression fabric, the gentle compression of the soft fabric will help keep your pain from getting worse. Compression increases blood flow which in turn delivers more oxygen to the affected area.
We’ve done hours of research on this topic and came up with some insightful information on bunion treatment to help you reduce your pain.
What is a Bunion?
A bunion is a hard, bony deformity that develops in the toe joint at the base of your big toe. It is a deformity of the metatarsophalangeal (MTP) joint. The medical term for a bunion is hallux valgus.
The main way to tell that you are developing a bunion is that your big toe will begin to point towards your other toes that are on the same foot and the toe joint at the base of the toe will begin to bulge out.A bunion will not go away on its own, but you have many options for treatment to keep it from getting worse:
Nonsurgical treatments that can relieve the pain and pressure of a bunion include:
- Changing shoes. Wear roomy, comfortable shoes that provide plenty of space for your toes.
- Padding and taping or splinting. Use over the counter, non-medicated bunion pads or foot sleeves. Also, your doctor can help you tape your foot into its normal position. This can reduce stress on the bunion and alleviate your pain.
- Medications. Acetaminophen (Tylenol, others), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) or naproxen sodium (Aleve) can help you control the pain of a bunion. Be sure that you can tolerate these medications and consult with your doctor. Cortisone injections might also help.
- Shoe inserts. Padded shoe inserts can help distribute pressure evenly when you move your feet which will reduce your symptoms and prevent your bunion from getting worse. Over-the-counter arch supports can provide relief for some people; others require prescription orthotic devices.
- Applying ice. Icing your bunion after you’ve been on your feet for a long time, or when it becomes inflamed can help relieve soreness and inflammation.
Why Should I Wear a Bunion Corrector?
You will find a variety of bunion corrector products that all differ in shape, style, and size, so knowing when you plan to wear your product, and for how long each day, will help you decide.
For mild cases, begin by wearing your corrector sleeve at night since you won’t be on your feet. Then, if it feels ok under your sock, you can try wearing your bunion corrector during the day too. Through trial and error, you’ll discover the perfect combination to relieve your pain and inflammation and straighten out your toe.
Important Things to Consider
The first step is to relieve the pain and pressure by wearing the right kind of shoe. (It’s also important to maintain a normal weight.) Shoes should have a wide, flexible sole to support the foot and enough room in the toe box (the part surrounding the front of the foot) to accommodate the bunion.
Good shoe choices are sandals, athletic shoes, and shoes made from soft leather. Shoes with a back should have a sturdy heel counter (the part surrounding the heel) to keep the heel of the foot snugly in place. You may be able to reshape narrow shoes with stretchers that make room in the toe box for the bunion. Keep heels low (no higher than an inch).
You can also protect the bunion with a moleskin or gel-filled pad/foot sleeve, available at drugstores. (Make sure your shoes have enough space to accommodate it.) A doctor may recommend semi-soft shoe inserts to help position your foot correctly as it hits the ground. You can also wear a splint at night to hold your toe straight and ease discomfort.
Bunion Corrector Review Conclusion
When a bunion is irritated and painful, warm soaks, ice packs, and non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin or ibuprofen may help. Whirlpool, ultrasound, and massage may also provide some relief. Also, try wearing soft compression to ease pain and straighten your toe. Cortisone injections can relieve pain temporarily by reducing inflammation, but they have many side effects, especially when used often and at high doses.