When we use the word “bunion,” there is a pretty good chance that you may think about a condition that is experienced by older individuals. This is fairly natural, since most of the patients who have this condition are adults, but it doesn’t take into account the fact that they happen to kids as well. Our Nassau County podiatrist office provides treatment for juvenile bunions so kids in our community can run around, play favorite sports, and simply be kids.

It is a common misconception that these bumps by your big toe develop on account of fashionable women’s shoes. Sure, pointy toes combined with high heels provide a situation where excess pressure is being applied to the metatarsophalangeal (MTP) joint. This might lead to the formation of a bunion—and definitely could exacerbate an existing condition—but this is not the root cause for all cases of these toe deformities.

When it comes to kids, stilettos and pumps are certainly not to blame. Instead, the condition often is a matter of structural issues. The human foot is a remarkably complex structure, which means there is a lot of room for variances between feet. Certain foot arch styles appear to play a role in the development of these foot deformities.

A foot that has low arches (flatfoot) is quite likely to undergo excessive motion during pronation—the inward rolling motion that assists in redistributing forces throughout the foot. When a foot rolls excessively, it creates extra pressure on the inner edge. This biomechanical abnormality increases the risk that a child or adolescent will develop a bunion.

In addition to flatfoot, another cause is hypermobility in the big toe’s MTP joint. Lax ligaments allow extra movement in the joint, so the phalangeal bone can drift inward, which then forces the MTP joint to jut out of its normal position.

Juvenile bunions are progressive conditions that worsen over time when left untreated. The good news is that early treatment can stop the progress and keep them from becoming severe. Let us help!

If your son or daughter has developed one of these common toe deformities, bring him or her in to receive care at Foot Specialists of Long Island. Give our Nassau County, NY office a call at (516) 804-9038 for an appointment, more information, or answers to any questions you may have. If you’d like, you can simply request an appointment with us online today.

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