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Foot care tips for pregnant women by an expert

Pregnancy is a period where a woman's body experiences significant emotional and physical changes.

Written by Editorial Team |Updated : May 24, 2018 10:57 AM IST

Pregnancy is a period where a woman's body experiences significant emotional and physical changes. During the nine months of pregnancy, various physical transformations take place which include an expanding belly, weight gain, growing breasts, stretch marks on the skin and swollen feet. Changes in the feet are never spoken about and highly ignored, many women experience this issue; suitable treatment should be considered to ensure the nine-month period is more comfortable. Dr Raghavendra KS, Consultant Joint Replacement & Spine Surgeon, Fortis Hospital, Kalyan, shares with us important foot care tips for pregnant women.

How is it caused?

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Swollen feet and ankles commonly referred to as 'Edema' occurs due to the body stocking more fluid than usual. This occurs when the fluid accumulates in the tissues, which is a result of increased blood flow and pressure of the Uterus which is growing; this pressure goes on to the pelvic veins (especially the right side-Inferior Vena Cava) and then flows to the lower limbs, causing pressure on the feet, leading to swelling. This is very common in most women during pregnancy, particularly amongst those in the third trimester.

Treatment:

  • Firstly, your doctor will recommend a course of medications to follow during your entire pregnancy; make sure to follow these as per the routine suggested
  • Drink plenty of water to keep the body well hydrated; eat a well-balanced diet, avoid food with high sodium, that can cause water retention
  • Refrain from standing for prolonged periods. If at work, you should be able to take frequent breaks to ensure you do not tire out, especially if you have a job that entitles you to be on your feet
  • If you're travelling, make sure to take breaks to sit down, breathe and relax for a while
  • Make sure you exercise regularly. Morning works, Yoga/ Pilates, under guided supervision are recommended. Avoid rigorous exercises; it is best to have a trainer during your latter trimesters
  • Elevate your feet at a height while relaxing, this will ensure blood is circulated. At work, place a box or chair under your desk
  • When at home, lie down on your left side, this takes the pressure off the inferior vena cava
  • Choose comfortable footwear that is soft and supports shock absorption
  • Swelling is mostly alike in both feet. If the swelling is not balanced or symmetrical in both, this could be a sign of a vascular problem and a doctor should be consulted without any delay

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