Exercise Daily – A bunion is a protrusion on the side of the big toe that is caused by arthritis. Actually, this lump is the consequence of a structural irregularity of the foot bones. It causes your big toe to tilt toward your second toe instead of being straight. But are bunions genetic?

It might be!

In rare instances, the projection is completely painless. A bunion, on the other hand, will cause the toes to get crowded together over time. This may result in discomfort and, in some cases, a lifelong deformity.

What are the causes of bunions?

Bunions are widely believed to be a hereditary condition. They develop as a result of a deformed foot structure that is passed down through families. 

Flat feet, overly flexible ligaments, and an irregular bone structure are all characteristics that might lead to the development of bunions. Some specialists feel that bunions are caused by improperly fitting shoes.

are bunions genetic

However, others believe that shoes just exacerbate an already existing structural condition. In most cases, bunions deteriorate with time. They may be exacerbated by the following factors:

  • Shoes that are too tight or too tiny, causing your toes to push together and putting pressure on your big toe
  • High-heeled shoes or shoes with sharp toes should be avoided since these designs squeeze your toes together
  • Being on one’s feet for extended periods of time
  • Signs of osteoarthritis in your foot

What exactly are the signs and symptoms of bunions?

Signs and symptoms of a bunion may include, in addition to the bump, the following:

  • The tissue on the side of your great toe is red and itchy.
  • Your big toe is pointed in the direction of your other toes.
  • The skin on the underside of your big toe is tough 
  • You have calluses on your second toe.
  • Chronic or intermittent foot aches
  • Your big toe has difficulty moving.

Because of the discomfort associated with a bunion, it may be difficult to move about. Talk to a specialist to find out are bunions genetic. Consult your doctor if you have any of the following symptoms:

  • Persistent foot discomfort
  • Not being able to find shoes that are appropriate
  • Your big toe’s mobility has diminished.
  • The presence of a large bump on or around the joint of your big toe.

Is There a Genetic Component to the Development of Bunions?

The argument over precisely what factors might cause a bunion is still continuing. And the answer is still unknown. Many people wonder whether bunions are hereditary. However, no genes that are particular to bunions have been discovered in the human genome so far. 

Although it is unlikely, there is always a chance that genes for other foot diseases might result in a familial susceptibility to bunions in certain people.

Bunion development is hypothesized to be facilitated by hypermobility. It is a condition that many people have. When someone has hypermobility, the ligaments around the metatarsal are loose and unable to maintain the metatarsal securely in position.

are bunions genetic

Another notion concerning how individuals may be genetically susceptible to developing a bunion is that they have a tight Achilles tendon. Overpronation of the ankle joint and a tight Achilles tendon are both hereditary diseases. They have nothing to do with physical difficulties like ill-fitting shoes.

So, are bunions genetic? While genetics is unlikely to have a direct influence on the development of bunions, other foot disorders may increase your risk of developing them.

Treatment Options

Treatment options vary based on the severity of your bunion and the amount of discomfort it is causing you.

Non-Surgical Treatment

Nonsurgical therapies for bunions include the following, which may help to alleviate the discomfort and pressure:

Changing shoes is a good idea

Wear shoes that are wide and comfy, and that provides plenty of room for your toes.

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Bunion pads or cushions that are available over-the-counter and are not medicated may be beneficial. They may function as a cushion between your foot and your shoe, alleviating any discomfort you may be experiencing.

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Pain relievers such as acetaminophen (Tylenol and other brands), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, and other brands), and naproxen sodium (Aleve) may help you manage the symptoms of bunions. Injections of cortisone may also be beneficial.

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Inserts for shoes

When you move your feet, padded shoe inserts may help to distribute pressure properly. This helps in alleviating your pains and preventing your bunion from becoming worse. 

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Some individuals may get assistance from over-the-counter supports, while others will need to have orthotic devices made by a doctor. So, if you know are bunions genetic, you should try inserts.

Applying ice to the affected area

Using ice on your bunion after being on your feet for an extended period of time may help decrease discomfort. If you have diminished sensation or circulation difficulties in your feet, see your doctor before administering ice.

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Surgical options are available

If conservative therapy fails to alleviate your symptoms, you may need surgical intervention. Surgery is not a recommendation for aesthetic purposes. However, you should consider it only if a bunion is causing you regular discomfort or interfering with your everyday activities.

are bunions genetic

Bunions may be treated surgically in a variety of ways, and no one treatment is optimal for every situation. Procedures for bunions may be performed as a single treatment or as a series of related procedures. They might include any of the following:

  • Getting rid of the swelling tissue surrounding your big toe joint is important
  • Making your big toe straight is accomplished by removing a portion of the bone
  • It may be necessary to realign one or more of the forefoot bones to a more normal position in order to rectify the aberrant angle in your big toe joint.
  • Creating a lasting connection between the bones of your damaged joint
  • It is conceivable that you may be able to walk on your foot immediately after a bunion treatment. Full healing, on the other hand, might take anything from weeks to months.

Following your recuperation, you’ll need to wear the correct shoes to avoid a recurrence. It is unreasonable to expect most individuals to be able to wear tighter shoes after having surgery.

If your doctor is affirmative about are bunions genetic, consult with your doctor. If they suggest surgery, brace yourself for it.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are bunions inherited?

Shoes with small toe boxes may exacerbate a bunion, but they are not the underlying cause of the condition. Bunions pass down through generations due to the fact that foot type (form and structure) is genetic.

Certain foot types are more prone to bunions than others. Low arches, flat feet, and loose joints and tendons are more prone to bunions development.

What is the main cause of bunions?

When you wear high heels, your toes are forced into the front of your shoes. It results in your toes being crowded. Shoes that don’t fit properly may cause bunions. Bunion development is more common in those who wear shoes that are excessively tight, too narrow, or too pointed.

How do you prevent a hereditary bunion?

Preventing a hereditary bunion is simple and not too much work. Just try the following:

  • Wear appropriate footwear
  • Consider orthopedic inserts to prevent overstressing your feet
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Exercise regularly to strengthen your ankles, feet, and toes

At what age do bunions develop?

According to experts, individuals begin to notice bunions in their 20s and 30s in the United States and other shoe-wearing nations. Hence, if you ask are bunions genetic, you can get an answer in “yes.”

Who is prone to bunions?

Bunions affect more than 20 percent of men and women between the ages of 18 and 65. However, more than 35 percent of men and women over the age of 65 usually suffer from this toe deformity. 

Additionally, there are a number of additional variables that might increase the likelihood of developing bunions, in addition to age. 

How can I shrink my bunions naturally?

  • Wear wide shoes with a low heel and soft sole
  • Try bunion pads
  • Hold an ice pack
  • Take paracetamol or ibuprofen
  • Try to lose weight

Take Away

It is possible that we may inherit genetic characteristics from our parents that we will be less than pleased with. Perhaps you inherited your father’s receding hairline or your mother’s small legs. 

Among these varieties of characteristics that we inherit from our parents, bunions are also one! There could also be passing on susceptibility to the development of bunions? When it comes to bunions, it’s quite possible.