Foot disorders are a leading cause of health concern in the United States, especially as more and more adults are expected to enter the latter part of the lives and suffer from foot complications. If you are caring or an aging parent, it is important to become familiar with the complications that may develop, especially the unique health risks associated with bunions.
Bunions are a common foot ailment among elderly adults and cause not only pain but extreme complications with foot deformities, when not treated properly. For some older adults, the development of bunion arthritis may occur, which can lead to decreased mobility in addition to pain. While, as caretakers, we may be inclined to watch for psoriatic arthritis signs in older adults, bunions may actually pose a greater long term health risk.
Bunion arthritis is a unique form of arthritic complication that is typically known as an acquired arthritis. Unlike other arthritis conditions that are related to psychological changes in the aging body, this form of acquired arthritis will result in pain in the lower extremity without much pain in the upper extremity. If your loved one is, therefore, complaining about lower extremity pain then a consultation with a doctor is necessary.
The foot disorder of bunion arthritis typically develops when bunions are not treated early and lead to a complication in foot deformity. When the foot becomes misshapen, the bones are misaligned and the resulting arthritic development occurs. Even with proper medications for arthritis pain, the bunion arthritis will not resolve until the bunions are removed and, when necessary, foot surgery is done to correct permanent malformations.
If your loved one is not of an age that foot treatment is possible, then home remedies can be used to help alleviate pain. In most cases, elderly adults with bunion arthritis will benefit from daily foot massages, orthopedic shoes, and the use of massage therapy to ambulate the toes and ankles. By providing these services at home, you can help to alleviate pain but, again, the bunion arthritis will not be resolved.
Arthritis is a common part of aging and is debilitating in the older adults who suffer from the complication. If you are struggling with bunion arthritis, or if you are caring for a loved one who has the complication, be sure to consult a doctor and try these home remedies to alleviate pain and improve mobility.
Sources: Textbook of Bunion Surgery, by Joshua Gerbert