Do Flat Feet Cause Bunions? – Causes and Symptoms

Flat feet are among one of the many factors that aggravate the formation of Bunions. They have a direct relationship that is influenced by age and movement.

Some bunions are hereditary, and they get worse as you grow up. However, those which are not hereditary begin to form if you have flat feet at an early age.

A child with flat feet will most likely end with a bunion at a young age. The underlying foot deformity initiates the formation of lumps at the side of the feet. Then as you age, the intensity and size of the bunions grow. It causes pain and discomfort in walking and mere sitting.

Gradual formation:

Bunions are not formed overnight as it is a gradual process. The wrong movement of feet and uneven body pressure distorts the feet’ shape, causing the Bunions to stick out. If they are not taken care of, they ultimately lead to more adverse problems.

The Building of Bunions:

Flat feet have lowered arches that are almost level to the ground. The arch of feet is essential for weight absorption, so your steps are smooth and measured. When the foot’s middle is lowered, the weight is not distributed to all parts of the feet evenly. The front and heels are flattened out, which pushes the metatarsal bones forward and outward. This also increases the mobility of the rolled out parts.

The overpronated areas are pushed away from the feet. As you move, the toes have less space to flex because of their flattened state, and they face aggressive rubbing from the ground. To accommodate the movement, the big toe moves towards the second and third smaller toes.

Initially, you will not notice it as there will be barely any pain. However, over the years, due to the big toe’s constant pushing, the effect spreads to the metatarsophalangeal joint, which is the joint at the base of the big toes. As the big toe rolls inward, the joint juts out, increasing the intermetatarsal angle.

Affected areas:

Once the formation of bunions starts, the area around the lump is severely affected. The joint’s soft tissue is inflamed, and the tendons of feet connected to the joint begin to loosen. This condition can become permanent.


Remember that Bunions are progressive! Not only will you end up with the increasing size of a lump but also other significant issues. Your feet will adapt to the shape and get resilient later, leading to Arthritis symptoms. Arthritis makes the treatment of Bunions even more challenging, especially in women because of osteoporosis.

Not to mention the skin problems around the lump. The constant rubbing causes the skin to harden, and a scaly like mass is formed. That is Calluses. Corns and blisters are also included. The inflamed area is tender to touch and painful. It makes wearing any enclosed shoe wear seem like a tough job!

Tailor’s Bunion:

Bunions are not only formed at the base of the big toe, but a small inward rolling along the bottom of the smallest toe can cause Tailor’s bunion. Though rare and easy to treat, Tailor’s Bunion presents its hardships! They are also formed because of the flat feet.

Orthotics Use:

The use of orthotics has a vital role to play in the treatment of Bunions. You can shift to Orthotics from a young age and kill the problem from its root. It is enough that you have one deformity already!

The good news is you can find orthotics of any size. The customized ones are better suited because they match the dimensions of your arch and Bunions. Other methods can help you with pain and in regaining the natural anatomy of feet:

    • Wider shoes to decrease pressure.
    • Use of anti-inflammatory and antibacterial drugs.
    • Topical and parenteral corticosteroids are common.
    • Moleskin or glue filled pads for the bunion area.
    • Toe separates to help joints regain their shape.
    • Night splints for straightening the anatomy of bunions.
    • Icing method.
    • Foot exercises for energizing ligaments and tendons around bunions.
    • Orthotic shoes are worn with supportive shoe inserts.


Flat feet may not be the exact cause, but they do catalyze the formation of Bunions. Those who have bunions do not necessarily have flat feet. One factor poses enough challenges to add another. You should take measures in treating bunions for faster running and more comfortable life!
+ 4 Sources:
You can ensure the accuracy of our information and content by clicking on the added sources. We adhere to strict sourcing guidelines related to medical associations and statistical research. Ensuring avoidance of data that could be misleading as to any matter of fact is our priority.
Bunions -Mayo clinic.

Harvard Medical School –Research.
Charlesmorellidpm –Painful Bunions Vs. Flat feet.
Indiana Podiatry Inc. -Flat feet and Bunions.

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