How to Overcome Swollen Feet During Pregnancy

How to Overcome Swollen Feet During Pregnancy

Most pregnant women often experience swollen feet or oedema in the legs during pregnancy. Swelling can appear anytime, but this complaint is usually more common during the second and third trimesters of pregnancy. Feet swelling, sometimes called edema, affects approximately eight out of 10 pregnancies. Swelling can also appear in other body parts, such as the face, hands, fingers, and breasts.

Why Am I swollen feet during pregnancy?

Factors that cause swollen feet during pregnancy
Swollen legs during pregnancy can occur naturally because the body of pregnant women produces more blood and body fluids to meet the nutritional needs of the fetus.
In addition, there are several other factors that can also make pregnant women experience swelling in the legs during pregnancy, namely:
  • Hormonal changes
  • The habit of standing too long
  • Excessive activity or exercise
  • Hot weather
  • Diet low in potassium and high in salt or sodium
  • High levels of caffeine consumption
Although expected, swelling during pregnancy that occurs suddenly and is severe, especially if accompanied by other complaints, can be a sign of a more severe pregnancy disorder, including preeclampsia.

Are swollen feet common in pregnancy?

Foot and ankle swelling during pregnancy is common and usually goes away after delivery.. It is caused by the extra weight that the body has to carry, along with a change in hormones that can cause fluid retention. Swelling is usually worse towards the end of the day and can be more severe in hot weather. Women may also experience swelling in their ankles and hands due to the exact causes. The good news is that this condition is generally harmless and should go away after delivery. To help reduce swelling, pregnant women should avoid standing for long periods of time, elevate their legs when possible and wear comfortable shoes with plenty of room for their feet to move around. Drinking plenty of fluids and avoiding salt can also help reduce symptoms. If you are concerned about swelling in your feet, speak to your doctor or midwife for advice on managing it effectively.

In addition to causing swollen legs, preeclampsia can also cause pregnant women to experience headaches that do not improve, blurred vision, upper abdominal pain, shortness of breath, and nausea and vomiting. This condition can also cause high blood pressure during pregnancy.
Not only preeclampsia but swollen feet during pregnancy can sometimes also be caused by certain diseases or medical conditions, such as:
  • Varicose veins
  • Blood clotting
  • Kidney illness
  • Heart failure
  • Liver dysfunction
  • Thyroid disease

Can swollen feet hurt the baby?

Swollen feet in a baby can indicate serious health problems, so it is essential to monitor your baby’s feet for any changes. Swelling of the feet can be caused by a variety of factors, such as infections, dehydration, or even ingesting poisonous substances. If the swelling persists and does not go away after some time, then it is essential to consult your doctor. Swollen feet can cause pain and discomfort in the baby and should not be taken lightly. A baby may also find it challenging to move their feet when they are swollen, which can lead to further complications. If you notice any swelling in your baby’s feet, it is best to seek medical help immediately, as it could indicate a more serious underlying condition.

Do swollen feet during pregnancy hurt?

Swollen ankles and feet during pregnancy can be an uncomfortable condition that is quite common. As the body retains more fluid in preparation for labour, it can cause the feet to swell and feel tight. In some cases, this swelling may cause aching or pain in the feet and ankles. It is vital to take measures to reduce swelling, such as avoiding standing for long periods and elevating your feet when possible. Additionally, drinking plenty of fluids and wearing comfortable shoes with low heels can also help alleviate discomfort from swollen feet during pregnancy. However, if you experience any severe pain or discomfort, be sure to speak with your healthcare provider for further guidance.

Can you massage swollen feet during pregnancy?

Massaging swollen feet during pregnancy can benefit expecting mothers, as it helps alleviate the discomfort caused by water retention. During pregnancy, an increase in the hormone progesterone causes fluid to build up in the extremities, leading to swollen feet and ankles. Massage can help reduce this swelling by stimulating circulation and lymphatic flow. It is best to use a gentle massage technique with light pressure; deep tissue massage should be avoided during pregnancy. Additionally, talking with your doctor before beginning any massage therapy is essential, as certain health conditions or medications may make it unsafe during pregnancy. With proper guidance and care, massage can provide relief from swollen feet during this particular time of life.

Remedies for swollen feet during pregnancy

Various Ways to Overcome Swollen Feet During Pregnancy
Swelling of the legs often makes pregnant women feel uncomfortable and challenging to move. To overcome this, there are several ways that pregnant women can easily, namely:
  • Support your feet with pillows when sitting or sleeping to improve blood circulation.
  • Elevate your legs
  • Sleep in a lying position on your left side.
  • Exercise regularly, such as swimming or walking.
  • Avoid sitting or standing for too long.
  • Avoid Wear compression stockings.
  • Avoid strenuous physical activity.
  • Wear comfortable shoes when travelling and avoid wearing high heels during pregnancy.
  • Drink enough water, about 2 litres or 8 glasses of drinking water per day. It might feel counterintuitive, but our bodies retain water if it does not get as much as it needs. According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (ACOG), you should drink between eight to 12 cups of water daily during pregnancy.
  • Eat foods high in potassium, such as potatoes, sweet potatoes, bananas, spinach, beans, and yoghurt.
  • Limit consumption of caffeinated drinks.
  • Reduce the use of salt in cooking.

When will pregnancy swelling go away?

Pregnancy swelling is a common symptom experienced during pregnancy, usually occurring in the hands, legs, and feet. It is caused by excess fluid retention due to hormonal changes in the body. Generally, pregnancy swelling begins at around six weeks of gestation and may increase as the baby grows and the uterus expands. The good news is that it usually goes away after delivery. However, it can take up to six weeks for the swellings to completely subside. In some cases, it may take up to nine months for all of the extra fluid to leave your body altogether. To help reduce swelling in your hands and feet during pregnancy, ensure you stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day and avoiding standing or sitting for long periods. Additionally, elevating your feet can help reduce any discomfort associated with swollen ankles or feet. Blood clots form in veins located deep within a part of the body, often in the legs. Pregnancy increases the risk of this disorder in several ways. During pregnancy, the body produces more proteins that help blood clot (clotting factors), probably intended to prevent too much bleeding during childbirth.

Regular exercise, propping up your feet, sleeping on your left side, and wearing compression stockings can help ease swelling in the feet and ankles during pregnancy. Sudden severe swelling in pregnancy can sometimes signify preeclampsia or deep vein thrombosis, which requires immediate medical attention.

When to contact a doctor or midwife

If the various ways to deal with swollen feet during pregnancy above do not work to overcome the complaints that pregnant women feel, you should consult a doctor for an examination. This is important so that the doctor can determine whether the swollen feet experienced are caused by certain diseases or medical conditions.

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