Bunions are obviously not fun to deal with and less fun to look at. The pain associated with bunions might be enough to have you contemplating surgical intervention. But are there any natural ways to shrinking bunions? Luckily, there are several ways to minimize foot pain and shrink bunions naturally. These methods have proven successful in getting rid of or at the very least shrinking bunions. There are a few methods to cover, so dive in to how to shrink bunions naturally 🦶.

arch support for hammer toe and big toe joint
Credit: Mayo Clinic

What are Bunions?

Bunions, also known scientifically as hallux valgus, are bony protrusions that can appear at the base of your toes. They are typically caused by deformities in how your foot functions and how it bears weight.

What Causes Bunions?

There is no one cause for bunions, but some common risk factors include poor footwear choices, certain medical conditions (such as arthritis), and even genetics. If you notice a lump or bump on the side of your toe that’s painful or tender to the touch, then chances are good that you have a bunion.

big toe joint in flip flops
Credit: VeryWellHealth

While there is no “cure” for bunions, there are ways to shrink them naturally without resorting to invasive surgery.

How to Shrink Bunions Naturally (7 Tips)

1. Wearing Shoes with the Right Support

Although some bunions can happen genetically, many occur due to a poor choice of shoes. One of the best ways to deal with painful bunions is to take care of your feet in the shoe department. If you’ve been shopping based on the look and not comfort, it’s time to make a change.

wearing shoes with big toe joint

When you look for a new pair of shoes, ensure they are:

  • Cushioned
  • Wide toe box
  • Well-fitting
  • Flat

Do not get a pair of ill-supported stilettos or high heels if you have bunions.

There are plenty of cute shoe options that fit these criteria, but it’s time to place the care of your feet first. Select an option that will make your feet, rather than your eyes, happy. 

2. Add an Ice Pack

An ice pack is another crowd favorite when dealing with bunions. A little cold and firm pressure will positively impact the item. This action easy for everyone, and it’s not hard to get your hands on an ice pack or two for the healing process.

bunion treatment for big toe and toe joints

You can make ice packs out of anything, including:

  • Towels
  • Plastic bags
  • Frozen vegetables

Anything cold pressed against your bunion will help the swelling go down.

It’s best to utilize ice packs consistently. The more you apply cold, the better your bunions will feel. Ice will also help the blood vessels and the tissue deflate. If the ice feels painful, don’t hold it on your bunions for too long. Ensure there is always something between your skin and the ice, such as a towel.

3. Maintain a Healthy Weight

Taking care of your weight can go a long way with bunions. Sometimes, people develop bunions because there is too much pressure – after all, your body can only withstand so much weight. Being overweight can also lead to swelling in the hands and feet, aggravating the bunions.

big toe joint bunion treatment for pain relief

To lose weight, you might try:

  • Eating better
  • Intermittent fasting
  • Working out regularly 
  • Morning walks
  • Staying active

Start small and work your way up from there.

Don’t do anything that might aggravate your bunions more than they already are. Avoid working out in ways that will press the bunions against the surface of your shoe. The goal is to help your feet, not give them more to deal with regularly.

4. Massage Your Feet

Another way to reduce foot pain is to massage the feet. This action can reduce swelling in the area and get rid of any additional pain caused by the misplaced muscle and bone. You can combine this technique with a hot or cold element to make it even more effective in the area.

treat bunions and bunion pain without surgery

You can massage your feet yourself or talk to a professional to see if they can perform regular massages for you. The most critical thing is to ensure your bunions receive the proper treatment. Avoid anything that might aggravate them further. If you don’t feel confident in your ability, seek professional assistance.

5. Try Bunion Pads

wear shoes with big toe joint and developing bunions

Bunion pads might not get rid of your bunions, but they can relieve pain and swelling that makes them worse. Similar toe spacers, these items sell at most drugstores and online. They wrap around your big toe to provide a cushion between your skin and the edge of the shoes.

Bunion pads are usually really affordable. You can find a pack of them at the store or online for about five dollars, so you can buy multiple at once without spending too much money. They’re also affordable enough that you can try them out and see if they help.

6. Get Shoe Inserts

wear shoes for foot muscles and avoid wearing flip flops

Shoe inserts and cushions are another way to improve your bunions. These go on the bottom of the shoe and provide support, especially for flat feet. Arch support will give a comfortable cushion and barrier between your feet and the shoe. With bunions, the distance between the displaced tissue and bone makes a big difference in the size and pain of the bunion.

There are plenty of gel inserts you can buy at the store, or you can ask your doctor for a recommendation. They can even measure your feet and provide inserts that perfectly mold your appendages.

Ensure your shoe inserts provide protection but don’t change how you walk. If you get poor inserts, it could bring injury to your feet.

7. Perform Foot Exercises 

Exercises work well. The best techniques work to make your feet more mobile and flexible. There are several ideal options online, and they are available for anyone to access.

bunion splints for big toe joint and foot muscles

The best workouts for bunions include:

  • Toe points and curls
  • Toe circles
  • Marble pickup
  • Figure-eight rotations

These will improve the strength and flexibility of your feet.

In time, you will better be able to withstand the bunions. These workouts, with consistency, will relieve pain and decrease the swelling.

Bunion Surgery

big toe joint bunions without surgery

At first, you can try treating bunions without surgery. But if the pain worsens or you’re not seeing results, bunion surgery is always an option.


foot doctor for plantar fasciitis and big toe joints

What Does Bunion Pain Feel Like?

Bunion pain can feel different for different people. Some people might feel a lot of pain, while others only feel a little bit. The pain might be in your toe, or it might be in your foot. You might also have swelling around your bunion.

How Fast Do Bunions Grow?

Bunions grow at different speeds for different people. Some people might see their bunions grow quickly, while others might not see much change. The pain and swelling might also be different for each person.

Do Bunion Splints Work?

Bunion splints are a way to make your bunions feel better. They are a kind of bandage that wraps around your toe and makes it feel comfortable. While they won’t cure bunions, they are a way to alleviate the pain.

How Long Does It Take for Bunion Splint to Correct?

There is no one definitive answer to this question. Some people find that bunion splints take a while to be effective, while others see results almost immediately. It really depends on the individual and how severe their bunions are. In general, though, it’s a good idea to commit to using bunion splints for at least 3-4 weeks.

Does Bunion Taping Work?

Bunion taping is another way to relieve pain and swelling from bunions. There are many different types of tape and wraps that can be used, so it’s important to find the right one for you. The tape or wrap should be snug, but not too tight.

Do Bunions Affect Balance?

Bunions can affect balance because they make it difficult to walk properly. If you have a bunion, you might walk with a limp or change the way you walk to avoid pain. This can cause you to lose your balance.

How to Shrink Tailor’s Bunions Naturally?

Tailor’s bunions are a kind of bunion that is smaller than regular bunions. You might be able to shrink them naturally by doing exercises, wearing inserts or shoes, and using tape or a wrap.

Final Thoughts

big toe joint bunions and high heels for foot problems
Credit: GoodRx

Bunions are painful and difficult to handle. These strategies can help shrink bunions naturally, though they might not go away entirely. Still, you will feel a lot of relief if you pick the right method for your feet.

If you want to get rid of your bunions, you might want to consider surgery. This choice is a little invasive, but it will free you of trouble with a short recovery time. For relief, try one of these! Your bunions should shrink naturally over time.

Similar Posts