Swelling feet is a problem nearly every pregnant woman will tackle at one point or another.
It’s one of the most common complaints and it’s simply when the muscles in the feet have a buildup of fluid that is excessive. This fluid buildup can lead to a rapid weight gain that is purely from the fluid itself. Although it’s more likely to occur in the warmer months, standing without shifting your weight or sitting (where the weight of the stomach on the thighs slows circulation) can both contribute to swelling feet.
There are a few things you can do when your feet swell. Elevate your feet higher than your heart. This means actually taking a little time to relax and literally putting your feet up. Another thing you can do is to put a cold pack on your feet and/or ankles for a short period of time, this will lessen the pain and the “tingly tightness” many women say they feel as their feet are swelling.
If you must stand or sit for a long period of time in your job, take a break and walk around, stretch and change positions. If you feel your feet swelling, stop and put them up. You’ll head off a lot of swelling incidences in this way.
You can help yourself avoid swelling feet by eating a low-salt diet and drinking plenty of water. It may sound crazy but when you’re retaining water, it is important to drink plenty of plain water to help your body flush out the excess fluid. Coffee and tea may be made with water but they are actually dehydrating and should be avoided.
Additionally, if you’re having the problem with swelling feet, as minor as it seems, do discuss it with your primary care physician, as it can be an early warning sign of pre-eclampsia which can endanger both mother and baby, and tends to be an issue in first-time pregnancies more often than not.
So, drink your water, put your feet up and treat those feet!