Bunions are among the most common complaints a podiatrist receives and bunion surgery is among the most frequent interventions for that complaint. Bunions are not only an aesthetic defect – but also cause pain and discomfort which affects the quality of life. Surgery can ease a patient’s life significantly.
In most cases, the operation and recovery afterwards doesn’t bring any problems to the patient and allows them to resume normal life in a short time. Of course, the length of this short recovery time depends a lot on how the patient follows the doctor’s recommendations for the rehabilitation period.
Postoperative Rehabilitation is Your Own Responsibility
After the surgeon’s work is done, you are the one in charge of your post-op recovery. Your feet need time to for their functions to get completely restored. Special exercises can help speed this process up. In most cases, the doctor will provide you with direction on performing them properly, if not, you can follow our guide and help yourself recover faster.
If you have issues with your metatarsophalangeal articulation mobility, do only exercises 1 and 3. All the fingers except the big toe must work out only after the pins are extracted. Ten minutes three times a day is enough to make your foot work again faster.
You can do this exercise as soon as the sensitivity of your feet returns. Do it three times an hour for three minutes.
Flex and extend your ankle joint. Your toes must move back and forth, up and down.
This stage comes one week after the operation.
Hold your big toe with your hand. Move it up and down. The joint in its lower part must work on flexion and extension. Hold it for five seconds in each position. Repeat ten times. You can work out the other fingers only after pin extraction.
Take something with a rounded shape. A bottle will do. Roll it with your foot for one minute. Step over it until you feel a slight pain.
Two weeks after the operation – new milestones to go through.
Take a little round item (like a ping-pong ball). Pick it up from the floor using your toes. Repeat 30 times.
This exercise has two levels of difficulty. First – pick up a towel from the floor using your toes. Repeat five times. The second level requires attaching some weight to the towel.
Sit comfortably. Put your feet on the floor, raise your toes up and hold for five seconds. Repeat 10 times.
Begin from the same position. Straight up your feet and press them tight to the floor for five seconds. Repeat 10 times.
Hold your tarsus and be sure it is immobile. Then press down your big toe. Hold it like this for five minutes. Repeat 10 times.
Do the same but in the opposite direction. Now you press the toe up.
Put your foot on the floor. Hold your tarsus with your hand firmly. Pull it forward and hold it like that for five seconds. Repeat 10 times.
Sit on a chair. Put your feet on the floor. Raise your feet up trying to hold them back with your hand. They must overcome the resistance. Do it for five seconds. Repeat 10 times.
A month after the operation, you can go harder.
Stand on your tiptoes for five seconds, and then go down. Repeat 10 times.
It is normal to feel slight pain during these exercises. Continue doing them but if the pain is too intense, than stop right away. It’s a good idea to discuss these exercises with your foot doctor, to be sure they are safe for you.