Bunionettes: Smaller Than Bunions, Still a Big Pain

During the summertime, your toes are often on display with open-toed sandals and days at the pool. That means it’s more likely you’ll look down and notice changes, like, for example, a bump on your baby toe. Uh-oh!  That, friend, could be the beginning of a bunionette, and though smaller in stature than its big brother bunion, it can still be a big pain!

BunionetteBunionettes are basically bunions but instead of forming on the big toe joint, they develop on your little toe joint. The same forces are at work here: an inherited foot structure prone to the problem, and outside pressure (typically from too tight of shoes) encouraging the toe to drift out of alignment, forcing the joint outward and the toe inward. The more pressure placed on the little toe joint, the worse the bunionette gets, and the worse it hurts!

Because bunions and bunionettes are similar conditions, they have similar solutions. You can decrease pain by using padding for a layer of protection between your toe and your shoe. Speaking of shoes – make a switch! Replace narrow, tight footwear with shoes that offer wide, deep toe boxes so toes aren’t squished. Slipping some orthotics inside can help redirect pressure away from your little toe joint, too. There are also stretches you can do and splints you can wear at night to help keep your toe in proper position. Again, like bunions, if these tactics fail to relieve your pain and slow progression, surgical procedures may be considered.

If you notice a bump on your baby toe, don’t let it go – if you do, it will only get worse! Call us so we can assess your condition and determine a treatment plan that works for you.

You can reach our Bloomington, IN office at (812) 333-4422. In the meantime, better sweat the small stuff! Make sure those sandals of yours aren’t adding to the problem and making your little bunionette a big pain.