Pregnancy is a beautiful journey every woman wants to embark on,One of the common challenges in pregnancy is fluid retention which can lead to swollen legs especially around the foot and ankle,There are some known probable factors that contribute to foot and ankle swelling during pregnancy. For starters, pregnancy changes everything in your body and fluid retention is one of the common physiologic changes.
Normally the growing baby exerts pressure on your blood vessels (veins), which in turn delays the return of blood to your heart. This alone can lead to swelling in the legs, ankles and feet. It is also established that pregnancy hormones contribute to these changes.
The good news is, most times foot and ankle swelling during pregnancy is common and usually goes away after delivery.
Please consider the following Remedies
1. Always stay off your feet when you can. Avoid standing for long periods. When you can, sit with your feet up and occasionally rotate your feet at the ankles. Better yet, lie down with your legs elevated.( This helps in circulation of the fluids, works like magic).
2. Sleep on your side. This is another approach that offers some relief. Please if you can, sleep on your left side. This takes pressure off the major blood vessel called “inferior vena cava” This is a large vein that returns blood from the lower half of your body to your heart. It also might help to elevate your legs slightly with pillows.
3. Consider wearing compression stockings. These are specifically designed to help in circulation. Depending on your location your health care provider might recommend wearing supportive tights or stockings during the day.
4. Be Active: Take daily walks, ride a stationary bike or swim laps in a pool. Just be active, but be mindful not to over indulge.
5. Keep your eyes on those salts: Avoid consuming too much salt. This will help in retaining water in the body.
6. Be stress free and Stay cool,It might be soothing to apply cold water compresses to swollen areas. Above, all stay cool and enjoy the jolly ride.
Current research suggests that foot massages might help decrease foot and ankle swelling during pregnancy. SO, GET YOUR PARTNER IN CRIME INVOLVED, WORK THOSE LEGS!
Please, take note, swelling doesn’t mean you should cut back on how much you drink. The Institute of Medicine recommends about 10 cups (2.3 liters) of fluids a day during pregnancy.
When should I be worried?
So, although mild foot and ankle swelling during pregnancy is normal, sudden swelling that is painful, especially if it is only in one leg could be a symptom of a blood clot (deep vein thrombosis). A sudden increase in swelling also might mean that your blood pressure is higher than normal, which could be a sign of preeclampsia. Both conditions require prompt evaluation and treatment.