Bunions are a very common condition of the feet. These are largely caused by the shoes that happen to be too tight pressing the big toe over and causing the metatarsophalangeal joint at the bottom of the big toe to become bigger. That's what a bunion is. The continuing strain from the shoe may become very painful and osteoarthritis can develop inside the joint. They are more prevalent in females, probably as they are more likely to use more tightly fitting high heel shoes. The only way to eliminate them is to have surgery. As we walk on the feet and that great toe is an important joint, surgery on that joint is connected with a time period of at least a few months of impairment after the surgery. For this reason, many people choose to stay away from the surgical option when they can.
There are actually no conservative alternatives to make them go away. However, there are several conservative options that can stop them hurting, however they can not make them go away. There are the bunion correctors that are braces which you wear through the night that are speculated to fix the angle of the toe. These bunion correctors do keep your big toe mobile and flexible which is a positive thing, however they do not make anymore than a couple of degrees difference to the angle of the toe. Exercises to help keep the metatarsophalangeal joint mobile and supple will often be helpful with some of the pain which could occur within the joint. If there is pain on the joint from pressure from the shoe, then it's essential that the footwear be wide enough and fitted adequately. Various pads may be used to keep force off the enlarged metatarsophalangeal joint. These types of non-surgical choices will never make them disappear, but they go along way to helping any discomfort that they may have from the bunions.