It’s perfectly normal for parents to always be concerned about their child’s general health – including their posture, weight, complexion, almost anything under the sun! Many are willing to send their kids for regular health check-ups, postural check-ups, and even send them for classes on yoga, pilates, ballet, dancing and sports for kids just to make sure they stay in good shape. However, forgetting about foot health is just as common for children as it is with adults. Parents often overlook growing signs of foot problems which could prove to be more troublesome later in life, such as misshapen feet, and fail to have them checked. One of these deformities is bunions, which are often shocking to find as they tend to already be quite severe by the time they are noticed – especially since they can present as early as age 6.
A bunion is an unnatural bony hump that forms at the side of the base of the big toe, causing it to tilt towards the second toe. In severe cases, it can even overlap with the second toe. A bunion occurs at the joint connecting the big toe to the rest of the foot, and therefore a lot of weight is put onto it as the child walks. It is just a matter of time before the bunion becomes painful, and cause difficulty in walking. A big cause of bunions is genetic inheritance – so if you or a relative are suffering from bunions, there is a high chance that your child will develop them at some point as well, and address the problem early.
Thankfully, if caught early, treatment for bunions is quite simple. Minor bunions do not require surgery, and can be corrected gradually by consistently wearing proper footwear and, if desired, undergoing treatments like extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT) which help to reduce the swelling caused by the bunion and promote healing back to the joint’s correct angle.
You can read our full article on bunions from our Conditions page here. If you suspect that your child (or you) is at risk of developing bunions, don’t hesitate to book an appointment with us and see what should be done.