I often get asked why shoes that fitted before pregnancy don’t fit afterwards, well this might go some way to explaining why you cant get into that beautiful pair of shoes you have been looking forward to wearing.
How Pregnancy Affects Feet
It is important to learn about foot health, particularly during pregnancy. The centre of gravity alters and this changes weight-bearing and can lead to pain in the heel, arch and balls of the feet.
Ankles and feet swell due to water retention and the increased blood volume in the body due to the baby. If swelling occurs it is important the avoid standing for prolonged periods, keep feet elevated and exercise feet. Mild swelling is normal but sudden swelling can be one of the symptoms of preeclampsia.
Correctly fitting footwear is essential as the feet can increase in size due to swelling and also oxytocin in the system. This the hormone that prepares the body for birth by causing causes muscles and ligaments to relax allowing the bones in the feet to spread. After birth, the ligaments tighten up again but can leave the feet up to 1 size bigger
What can be done to reduce swelling while pregnant?
Avoid long periods of standing, if you are on your feet a lot take breaks and have a 5-minute walk at least once an hour.
Elevate your legs when you are sitting if possible, this allows excess fluid to drain away from the lower limbs.
Avoid tight elastic tops on socks or stockings and use support tights if possible.
In the end, if you still want to wear those lovely shoes that you wore before the baby came along, simply buy a bigger pair.
Look after your feet and they’ll look after you