• Spring Hatfield, RDH

Causes and Treatments for Pregnancy Related Edema

Special Guest post from Taos Footwear


Swollen feet and ankles are among the most common symptoms that women experience during pregnancy, yet many women don’t know how to reduce their swelling or pain. While this can be very inconvenient and uncomfortable, there are many natural remedies that can have a positive effect on your symptoms. Even something as simple as wearing a pair of more supportive boots can make a difference in your swelling.

If your swollen ankles or feet are interfering and making it more difficult to maintain your lifestyle, try out one of these simple treatments—you’ll likely be surprised by the results. Of course, not every case of swelling will respond to home remedies. If that’s the case, tell your doctor about your symptoms and ask for alternative solutions if the swelling worsens.

Why Are My Feet Swollen?

Swollen feet and ankles, often known as edema, is caused when the tissues of the affected areas trap excess fluids. Although these symptoms are occasionally signs of an underlying condition, swollen feet are typically nothing more than uncomfortable. That means you’ll just need to focus on treating your symptoms.

Swelling is a normal part of pregnancy and can occur in the feet as well as the face, ankles, hands, and calves. One common cause of swollen tissue is dehydration, which can lead your kidney to store more fluids than are usually necessary. Your uterus also causes general strain on your body, which can impact circulation.

How to Treat Swollen Feet

Although it’s possible that your swelling won’t completely disappear with home remedies, they’re a good place to start before seeking additional treatment. There are a number of convenient methods of reducing your symptoms that involve little more than minor lifestyle changes.

Avoiding Caffeine

An incredible 90% of the world population consumes caffeine every day, but it can actually have a negative effect on your body, especially during pregnancy. This is primarily because of its diuretic quality, causing you to lose more fluids than necessary through urination.

Caffeine also causes dehydration, which is harmful to your body for a number of reasons. If you’re experiencing swollen feet, you should make an effort to reduce your caffeine intake while also drinking more water. A generally healthier diet, especially one which emphasizes high levels of protein and salt, will also have a positive effect on a variety of pregnancy-related symptoms.

Don’t Stay Sedentary

The disadvantages of staying in one place for too long are well-documented, and they are even more pronounced during pregnancy. The longer you remain at your desk, the less opportunity your body has to circulate fluids. If you can’t switch to a treadmill desk, try to take periodic walking and stretching breaks throughout the day.

It can be difficult to keep up with your normal exercise routine while pregnant, but maintaining some level of activity can also be helpful. Even light exercise like yoga can have a substantial effect on your circulation, helping your body distribute fluids and avoiding the pooling that can result in edema.

While swelling can cause discomfort and inconvenience during pregnancy, it’s rarely a sign of a more serious condition, and can typically be treated using simple home remedies. If your swelling doesn’t respond to the methods in this article, talk to your doctor about the possibility of additional treatment.

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