At age 72, Joyce was still a pretty healthy woman who enjoyed spending time in her garden each day. She also liked to participate in charity walks and play lively games of tag with her grandchildren in the backyard. Unfortunately, her feet had begun to hurt, and the pain was getting worse. She found herself turning down games of tag and her garden was getting weedy and overgrown. Joyce’s son, Martin, insisted her foot pain wasn’t a normal part of aging and maybe there was something a doctor could do about it. When Joyce saw her doctor, he told her she had bunions and referred her to a podiatrist.
Bunions are a fairly common foot problem for older adults. If your older family member is complaining of foot pain, knowing more about bunions may help you to determine if your aging relative needs to see a doctor.
When Should Seniors See a Doctor?
Bunions form on the big toe. They are bony bumps that develop at the base of the toe on the side of the foot. Bunions develop when the big toe pushes against the second toe, deforming the joint and making it stick out. Sometimes the bump looks red and sore. The joint may also be swollen. Other symptoms of bunions are:
• Corns or calluses that usually happen on the toes where the big toe and second toe rub against each other.
• Pain that is either constant or comes and goes.
• Limited mobility of the big toe if arthritis is present.
Some bunions don’t cause any problems, so they don’t require treatment. However, if your older family member experiences any of the following, they should see a doctor:
• Persistent pain.
• Visible bump on the big toe joint.
• Loss of mobility in the toe or foot.
• Trouble finding shoes that fit well because of the bunion.
What Causes Bunions?
Doctors don’t know exactly what makes some people get bunions. However, they suspect there may be several factors involved, including:
• The shape and type of the foot, which is typically inherited.
• Injuries to the foot.
• Congenital defects of the foot.
Some doctors believe that a person’s choice of footwear could cause bunions, too. For example, some say that wearing high heals could make them form. Others think footwear might contribute to bunions, but probably isn’t the cause.
Whatever may have caused your older family member’s bunions, elderly care providers can help them to deal with the painful foot condition. An elderly care provider can walk with the senior to ensure they don’t fall since foot pain may lead to them taking a misstep. If the older adult has surgery to resolve the problem, an elderly care provider can assist them while they recover. The elderly care provider can let them rest while the provider cleans the house, cooks dinner, and brings them the things they need.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Home Care in Naples, FL, call the caring staff at Dial-a-Nurse today. Naples: (239) 307-0033. Ft. Myers: (239) 307-0065.
In 1995 he became Administrator of Dial-a-Nurse nursing agency, the oldest nursing agency in the Southwest Florida succeeding his mother who started the company 37 years ago. He is also President of Nevco, Inc., an educational healthcare training company begun in 1988.
Mr. Wolfendale has worked with the U.S. Department of Commerce on various Missions to improve the quality of life around the world by development of supportive healthcare programs. In 2005 he traveled with U.S. officials and addressed the Italian National Government assisting in the creation of Nurse Education mandates for that Country. In 2006 he was invited and spoke with the National Institutes of Continuing Education in Eastern Europe on healthcare education and developmental mandates, and most recently represented the United States at the European Union in Lake Balaton, Hungary in 2011. In 2014 he traveled with the U.S. Department of State to Singapore, Malaysia and Vietnam in an effort to improve caregiver knowledge and training.
Mr. Wolfendale has worked with a number of non-profits in contributing and creating curriculum to improve the quality of life in third-world countries since 2001, and notably created a successful program in Odessa, India that has been modeled in other areas of the world. In his backyard, he has worked with local Goodwill Industries to provide curriculum and training to underserved individuals who have obtained employment as a result of educational training. He was the Congressional appointment to the Governor's purple ribbon task force in 2013, and has worked to educate caregivers in all aspects of Alzheimer's training.
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