During the last trimester when your belly swells, your ankles, legs, and feet might be increasing in size as well. Known as edema, swollen ankles, legs and feet affect around three-fourths of pregnant women somewhere around week 22 and week 27 of pregnancy. The condition will stay around till you give birth, but it can make you feel pretty uncomfortable – worsening towards the end of the day and generally bad during summers.
During pregnancy, the hormone levels rise the body, and the body tends to retain water than it usually does and therefore some swelling in the body and legs is normal. The retention of fluid is called edema and it gets worse in the last trimester. This retention of fluid may not be comfortable but plays a vital role during delivery and labor. It helps the tissues and joints in the pelvis to open up. The body produces nearly 40% to 50% more fluids and blood to nourish the fetus. As the uterus grows, it puts pressure on the veins in the pelvic area which slows down the return of blood to the heart, accumulating it. This pool forces fluid from the veins to the tissues of your feet and ankles.
Edema causes swelling in your ankles, feet, and legs, however, at times your hands and face may also swell. The swelling is quite slow and progresses as you go further in your pregnancy. However, if you notice sudden swelling in your face or hands along with a blurred vision this could be an indication of high blood pressure so make sure you notice this and consult your doctor immediately. Also, if your skin around the eyes swells up, or the swelling in the face is more than slight, or one of your legs seems puffier than the other, it is wise to call your doctor and it could either be preeclampsia or clotting – both of which require medical attention.
Swollen feet and legs are uncomfortable, but they aren’t painful. Here are some tips to give some relief to your swollen legs and feet:-
However, it is not a joy to have swollen ankles and feet but it will not be too long when you see your beautiful angel for the first time and your gorgeous legs back again!