Many women experience feet swelling during pregnancy. Depending on the cause, this can be a simple albeit somewhat uncomfortable condition that can be left to go away on its own, or it itself may be indicative of a serious underlying condition that needs immediate medical attention. Swelling feet of course is a condition that can be experienced by anyone, but its occurrence during pregnancy demands coverage all of its own.
Feet swelling during pregnancy is very often due to edema, a condition which results from fluid buildup in a woman’s system. A pregnant woman’s system comes up with quite a bit of extra blood to help her care for her growing baby. But in addition to that, her uterus grows and expands in size, which puts additional pressure on her veins. This results in circulation slowing down quite a bit – and as a result, blood pools in certain areas and water accumulates in foot tissue. This water can sometimes take a little more time to be discarded by the system and has nowhere to go while it “waits”, leading to edema. Take note, though, that should the swelling be severe and be accompanied by swelling in the face and hands, it could be pre-eclampsia, which is a very serious condition that can reduce blood flow to the placenta and can thus be dangerous for both babies and mothers.
If you experience your feet swelling during pregnancy, there may be no need to worry because this is a transitory condition that may fade in and out throughout the course of your pregnancy and will definitely go away for good after you give birth. And there are some things that you can do to help manage the swelling, too, if not get rid of it altogether.
Firstly, it may be a bit hard to do especially if you are at work, but keep your feet up when you can to help drain the fluid from them.
Next, lifestyle changes could also help. Being pregnant is no excuse to not eat smart or exercise (quite the contrary, as you are now responsible for another life and not only your own). Avoid salty food – minimize consumption of food like chips and other junk food, or avoid these foods altogether. Eat more protein – you have to feed your baby right. Be more active, stand up and exercise to help your blood flow more freely. Your baby will thank you for it too. And if you don’t drink enough water, do that – the body holds on to the water it contains if it approaches dehydration, which can lead to enema.
Lastly, of course, you should still go and see a doctor if the puffiness and swelling persists or becomes very painful. As has been mentioned, it might be indicative of a more serious condition – and when you’re pregnant it always pays to err on the side of caution.