Motherhood is pure bliss, but with it comes various physical and mental changes in a women’s body. This is the most beautiful phase of one’s life, but is also associated with the most discomforts you can have during your entire life. As the baby grows inside, the body prepares itself to adapt the needs of the growing child.
Usually seen towards second or third trimester of pregnancy is a common discomfort called Edema, or the swelling especially on the joints, ankle and foot. In the latter half of pregnancy, the body has to carry the weight of both the mother and child, and therefore long hours of work, upright sitting, and intake of processed foods, increased salt/iodine intake can lead to minor swelling on the feet.
Since the body weight increases, it is essential to care about the needs of the feet and keep them fit to avoid swelling, and in case there is swelling, it should be given proper rest and care and let it heal to keep one fit and working.
Unless the swelling is prolonged and excess, medically, it is a normal condition which can be taken care of with a few precautions and natural care. Here, you can find some holistic remedies, to take care of your feet in addition to the common cares like pedicures and massages, diet control, exercise, yoga and others.
Various Remedies For Edema During Pregnancy
Grapeseed oil or grapefruit essential oil is base oil and can be used to massage the feet once a day to prevent and cure swelling during pregnancy. to use, take a few drops of Grapeseed oil in hand and rub between the fingers till the oil gets a little warm from body heat.
Massage in circular motions starting from the toes and ankle and then move upward to the calf. If the swelling is immense, it might cause discomfort initially, but gradually becomes soothing to the feet. Massage for 20-25 minutes or as suited. You can also add a few drops of this oil to a bucket of water and soak the feet in it for sometime for similar benefits.
Aromatherapy oils have a very strong smell and therefore use of these oils for massage is not advisable. An alternate way to use it is by adding a few drops to lukewarm water and keeping the feet dipped in it for 30-40 minutes. You can use oils like citrus oils, lavender oil, chamomile oil etc that are good to reduce inflammation from the feet and bring instant relief.
You can massage moist foot inside the water but usage of oil directly on the skin should be avoided. There are various oils that the doctors prescribe for massage for pregnant women; those can be used for body and feet.
Cabbage leaves have great anti-inflammatory properties and are beneficial to sooth the skin and muscles of the feet that cause edema. You can take either green or white cabbage’s external leaves and clean them with a dry cloth, do not wash. Put the leaves in a dish and refrigerate (do not freeze) for about 3-4 hours. Now put these cold leaves around the swollen area of the feet and let it stay for 20 minutes.
You can also use a soft and not very tight bandage to secure the leaves in position. Repeat this process at least twice to see the swelling subside quicker than anything.
Salt Water Soak
Salt water absorbs the pain and discomfort associated with edema and brings instant relief. To use, fill a tub with hot water and add a few teaspoons of bath salt, rock salt or Epsom salt to it. Immerse the feet in this water for at least 30 minutes. After this, wipe off excess water from the feet and take a few drops of jojoba oil and peppermint oil to cool and massage the feet in slow circular motions starting from below up to the calf.
Alternately, if you feel that the feet have become too warm due to swelling, take cold water and add a few drops of ginger oil to reduce the overheated sensation and bring relief. Thereafter, massage with peppermint oil for a soothing effect.
Hydrate the System
For pregnant women, an imbalance between sodium and water in the body is a primary cause for swellings on the feet. It is of utmost necessity to consume at least 10 glasses of water daily, in addition to juices, barley water, milk and other fluid intake.
Water not only keeps the system hydrated, but cleanses it of the non-required extra salts and fats in the body which are responsible for various ailments like swelling on the feet, hands and face, fat accumulation and increase of unhealthy weight. Water is also beneficial for the fetus to grow and develop healthily. Drink dandelion tea to cleanse the system and keep bowel movements normal.
Resting for 2 hours in a day is important. During pregnancy, if there are long durations for standing, it is essential to switch you weight between the feet to avoid pain and swelling. In addition, while resting be sure that the feet are elevated at least about 10-15 inches from your heart.
Do not cross the legs, as it blocks the flow of blood from thighs to the feet. To prevent the pain and discomfort of swollen feet, avoid sitting with feet hanging down; instead, use a tool to rest the foot at thigh level.
Right Clothing And Footwear
Proper clothing and footwear play an essential role in keeping the body comfortable. Avoid wearing very tight clothes especially near the ankle; this blocks the normal flow of blood. Avoid wearing very high heels or uncomfortably fitted footwear.
This not only causes trouble while walking but can also bring you a twisted ankle which is equally bad. You can wear support host and socks, they help maintain the flow of blood and prevent swelling. Choose comfortable fabrics and loose fits till the baby is born, this facilitates better health and also keeps the discomforts at bay.
Caution: Please use Remedies after Proper Research and Guidance. You accept that you are following any advice at your own risk and will properly research or consult healthcare professional.