A bunion not only looks painful, it IS painful. Bunion surgery and its recovery process can be intensive and lengthy. Fortunately, there are natural ways to reduce pain associated with your bunions, prevent bunions from developing further, and even help heal your bunions. One way is finding the best bunion splint that puts your foot back into correct anatomical position by realigning your toes and joints. While this is a more conservative approach than surgery, a splint does effectively reduce pain caused by bunions. We think this is great news, so we’ve rounded up the top 5 bunion splints to take the stress off your bunions so that you can get back to life before bunion pain.
Our top pick is the Bunion Splint by Vive. This brace comes as a pair, so you’ll get one for each foot which we really like, because it’s common for people to have bunion problems on both feet. It provides pain relief by straightening the big toe. Specifically, designed for nighttime use, we feel that this brace will definitely alleviate your pain, and help you get a full night’s sleep.
What We Love About this Product:
Fully adjustable to fit your feet comfortably and securely
Comes as a pair, providing you with good value for money
Bunions can prevent you from walking and carrying out the activities that you love. The Bunion Splint by Vive is designed to relieve the pain caused by a bunion, while helping to gently realign the toe.
The corrective bunion brace will also work to relieve pressure and inflammation from the area. Although bunion splints can never provide an overnight cure, we think this product can provide effective relief from pain and discomfort in the long-term.
3 Tips for Using the Bunion Splint by Vive
The Vive Bunion Splint works to support and realign the big toe. This reduces both friction and pressure applied to the bunion area. It can take some time to get used to wearing a bunion splint. Follow these simple tips to get the most out of the Bunion Splint by Vive:
Wear the splint for short periods at first, while you grow accustomed to it
Keep the splint clean by hand washing it in cold water
Use the easily adjustable strap to secure firmly in place - the better it fits, the more effective and comfortable it will be!
Strong metal support keeps big toe straight without being uncomfortable
Bunion pain can strike in many forms, so you need a treatment that can adapt to meet your changing needs. This eleven piece bunion kit features everything you need to be rid of bunion pain, including two gel bunion protector sleeves and a range of toe separator rings. The sleeves and guards are made out of a soft, latex-free gel that is gentle on skin and keeps feet cool and dry. Made to fit virtually any foot, right or left, you’ll want to keep returning to this kit again and again.
The Bunion Corrector & Relief Protector Kit is our second pick. We like this splint for its dedication to preventing bunion surgery by properly realigning the toes and reducing bunion pain. Its a one size fits all design, so you're good to go without worrying about sizing. The Velcro holds the big toe in proper alignment while allowing you to retain control over the amount of tension. This splint does exactly what a bunion splint is supposed to do and it does it well. Plus, it is designed to address hammer toe pain and tailor's bunions (little bunions that may appear near your pinky toes). Not to mention, it's durable and easy to clean.
Realigns big toe, helps with hammer toes and tailor's bunions
We like this splint because it incorporates padding that makes it comfortable to wear for long periods of time. It’s easy to wash and keep clean. This brace is ideal for those wanting a comfy padded feel combined with medical grade support and realignment.
Includes 2 splints (one for each foot)
Hinged design offers flexibility
Uncomfortable to wear with shoes
Tip: Fasten in place tightly to prevent the product from slipping.
The Bunion Corrector is another solid pick. We like this splint for its versatility and ease of use, and because it effectively reduces bunion pain. This sleeve style splint reduces bunion pressure and inflammation and cushions the bunion area to make walking and exercising less painful. Part of the cushion comes from the gel that also helps to protect the skin from chaffing against the sleeve as you move. This sleeve is thin and discreet enough to be worn under socks without being too noticeable. It's also ideal for wearing with sneakers. Plus, this splint also helps reduce pain associated with hammer toes! It is best suited for active individuals who require less support.
Comfortable enough to wear for a long time
Effectively reduces pain
Stays in place, it doesn't slide around when you move
Made from medical grade material
May be too big for a size 6 or smaller foot
Only for minimal to moderate bunion support
Tip: Excellent splint for exercise. If you're active and need to fit a splint under sneakers but also want a splint with stronger support and correction, get this one to wear for sports, and buy another one for lounging at home.
Dr. Frederick's Original Nighttime Bunion Splint is a great splint for people with developing bunions. It has a tag on each splint letting you know whether it’s for the left or right foot, so putting it on is a breeze. While a bit bulky, it won’t cut off blood flow, and has a gel pad for added comfort. This is ideal for people with minimal bunion pain and those liking the gel pad feature.
Reduces pressure on MP joint
Too large for those with more narrow feet
What Causes Bunions?
Various medical conditions such as cerebral palsy and marfan syndrome, a condition that affects connective tissue
Genetics, a family history of bunions increases the likelihood that you will develop them too
Arthritis is another likely cause of bunions, but it can also be the result of having bunions. There are three types of arthritis that cause bunions
Rheumatoid arthritis (immune system attacks joint lining and causes inflammation and pain)
Gout (affects big toe)
Psoriatic arthritis (associated with the skin condition psoriasis)
There is debate among doctors and scientists as to whether uncomfortable or tight shoes actually cause bunions. But, if you’re concerned about your high heels causing you to develop bunions, you could try to err on the side of caution and wear a comfortable roomy pair of sneakers a few days a week, giving your big toe some breathing space.
Bunions primarily affect people by causing pain, pressure, irritations in the form of callouses, and occasionally complications like bursitis. This pain can be severe, causing people to have problems walking, and distorting the appearance of the foot. Some people also experience reddening of the skin near or on the bunion.
Other symptoms can include:
Restricted mobility of the big toe
Arthritis can result from untreated bunions
Bunions only get worse. So it’s a good idea to prevent further damage and pain with a splint as early as possible
How Can I Maximize the Benefits of Wearing a Splint?
Bunion surgery is an expensive option that requires a long recovery period. A splint will realign the foot and take pressure off the toes, reducing bunion pain. If you want to maximize the pain-reducing benefits of wearing a splint, try these tips.
Ice your bunions with an ice pack before and after using your splint to reduce inflammation
Cortisone shots or pain medication (discuss these options with your doctor)
Wear shoe inserts to evenly distribute pressure when walking as this can help take the pressure off bunions that contributes to pain
Wear splints in short bursts, especially when lounging, to gradually increase the amount of time you’re able to wear them if you are experiencing discomfort
When to Consider Bunion Surgery Over Treatment Splint
Splints are designed to relieve pain, not cure your bunions. The only way to truly “cure” bunions is through surgery. However, surgery is typically reserved as an option for people who have extremely severe bunion pain- pain that has severely cramped a person's lifestyle.
Find it hard to walk a mile or less
Are unable to wear shoes
Cannot obtain relief (even with pain medicine and anti-inflammatory drugs)
You should always discuss with your doctor any pain you may be experiencing and your options for bunion surgery.
Take Back Your Life!
Bunion splints are a great way to realign the foot and reduce pain. We’ve selected the 5 best bunion splints to meet a variety of needs. As always, we recommend that you take your time making a decision and speak with your doctor. However, there’s no need to be in pain for longer than necessary, and you should definitely be preventing further bunion damage starting as soon as possible. It’s best to avoid surgery by preventing further bunion damage with a splint. To help you, we’ve done some research for you. While it’s always good to research your options thoroughly yourself, don't forget to consult with your doctor!
Amanda has a Masters of Science in Nutrition from Syracuse University which equipped her with courses applied to licensure as a dietitian. She also worked as a Program Director for the Wellness and Fitness Department for the YMCA. She is well versed in physical fitness, with a certificate from the National Academy of Sports Medicine in physical fitness training. She has taught numerous fitness classes, including college courses in the Athletic Department, as an adjunct instructor, at the SUNY University at Buffalo. She currently resides with her husband in the NYC area, and loves to put her knowledge of anatomy and physiology to use by being active. Both her and her husband are self-declared "foodies."
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