Swelling of some parts of the body during pregnancy is caused by your body holding more water than usual when you’re pregnant.
It is actually normal to get some swelling while you’re pregnant, particularly in your legs, feet and fingers.
It often gets worse at the end of the day and further into your pregnancy.
Below are some frequently asked questions about leg swelling in pregnancy, with appropriate answers.
Is Leg Swelling Normal During Pregnancy ?
Yes it is very normal, swelling that comes on gradually isn’t usually harmful to you or your baby, but it can be uncomfortable at times.
What Causes Leg Swelling In Pregnancy ?
Leg swelling often occurs because the body generates extra fluid during pregnancy to help support the baby. Circulation also slows down which can also add to the build up of fluid.
The feet and ankle swell up because the womb expands with the growing baby, putting pressure on the veins of the legs as fluid doesn’t flow up well, so they remain on the legs.
When Is Leg Swelling Most Common ?
Leg swelling appear mostly in the later stages of 2nd-3rd trimester of pregnancy, roughly from 4 months up.
The reason being the womb and baby is getting bigger and putting more pressure on the legs.
What are Other Factors That Contribute To Leg Swelling ?
There are some other factors that contribute to leg swelling in pregnancy, which are :
1. Hot weather
2. Caffeine intake
3. Not drinking enough water
4. Not eating well (Dietary Imbalance)
5. Being on your feet for a long time
Normal leg swelling in pregnancy follows the pattern below.
- Appears gradually
- It’s worse in hot weather
- It appears worse at nights
- It lessens when you lie down or raise your feet.
Leg swelling is equal on both legs.
Are there Abnormal leg swellings ?
Swollen feet can be a sign of “PRE-ECLAMPSIA”. A condition that can develop during pregnancy causing dangerously high blood pressure.
The Signs Include:
– Sudden swelling of the hands, feet, face or around the eyes
– Swelling that gets dramatically worse
– Severe headache
In addition sometimes,
– Blurred vision
– Difficulty Breathing
If you notice swelling in one foot that is associated with pain, redness or heat, it could be “DEEP VEIN THROMBOSIS”. A condition where a blood clot blocks a vein in the leg. You should see your doctor.
Home Remedies To Reduce Leg Swelling
1. Reduce caffeine intake
2. Drink more water
3. Raise your leg and rest
4. Wear loose and comfortable clothing
5. Walk around more
6. Wear comfortable shoes, not tight
7. Sleep on your left side
8. Avoid standing for a long time
If you don’t feel comfortable with your leg swelling, then you should see your doctor.