A woman’s body goes through many changes during pregnancy. These changes affect different parts of the body including the feet! They are no exception!
During pregnancy there is natural weight gain, which causes an alteration to the centre of gravity. This thus changes a woman’s gait patterns and areas of pressure. There is a natural increase in pressure to the knees and the feet, leading to foot pain.
The two most common issues which most pregnant women may notice are:
- Over pronation (flat feet) – due to the natural weight gain
- Swelling at the feet and ankles – due to the reduction in blood flow back to the body as there is increase pressure on the blood vessels due to the presence of an enlarge uterus. This should usually be symmetrical between both feet. If not similar, it may be a result of a vascular problem and doctor must be consulted immediately.
These conditions may lead to other conditions such as:
- Varicose veins
- Cramping at the calves
- In-grown toe nails
- Heel pain/arch pain/forefoot pain
- Hot feet
- Cracks at the heels
These issues can commonly be treated by visiting a podiatrist for routine care – including nail care and management, use of orthoses to redistribute pressure.
Some home tips to aid to reduce the risk of foot problemswould include:
- Altering footwear – shoe sizes may increase due to the presence of swelling
- Keeping feet elevated
- Wearing seamless socks – to reduce constriction
- Exercise – walking regularly is essential as it aids with circulation and helps maintain the overall health
- Drinking water
- Eating healthy