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Foot Health: How mothers to be can relieve aching feet during pregnancy

By Dr. Matthew Ellsworth
Special to KyForward

Pregnant women are susceptible to aching and swollen feet and should take care to watch for symptoms.

One problem that can occur is over-pronation, which occurs when the arch of the foot flattens and tends to roll inward. This can cause pain and discomfort in your heels while you’re walking or even just standing up, trying to support your baby.


FUN FACT: This flattening of the arch in the foot is caused by a hormone that is released during pregnancy which helps the tissues become more flexible in preparation of child birth.

Another problem is edema, or swelling in the extremities. This often affects the feet during pregnancy and tends to occur in the later stages.

A few tips for proper foot care during pregnancy:

— Wearing orthotics can provide extra support for the feet and help distribute weight evenly.

— Minimize the amount of time spent walking barefoot. Wear a supportive sandal, house shoe or slipper as an alternative.

— Wear shoes with good arch support – no shoes that you can roll up like a burrito.

— Wear shoes that allow for good circulation to the feet.

— Elevate feet if you experience swelling. It’s easier said than done because you have a lot to get done before baby gets here, but this IS proven to help.

— Massage your feet by rolling each foot over a frozen water bottle. Better yet – have your partner massage them for you.

— Get regular, light exercise, such as walking to promote blood circulation to the feet.

For more information about foot care during pregnancy, contact our office.


Dr. Matthew Ellsworth, AACFAOM, is an associate at Lexington Podiatry

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