Swollen ankles after pregnancy is not a cause of concern and with adequate exercise and less salt intake, one can get rid of this ankle swelling.
Being pregnant is a happy feeling, but pregnancy does bring a few problems like swollen ankles and feet. However, according to doctors this is quite normal. Pregnancy causes addition of some more pounds to the body weight. This can put excessive strain on the legs and cause ankle swelling, which may last long after delivery.
Lack of exercise is the primary contributory factor in the development of ankle inflammation. Other reasons are discussed below:
It is observed that the body’s ability to retain fluids dramatically increases during pregnancy. The excessive fluid gets accumulated in various tissues of the body including the feet. This abnormal fluid buildup beneath the skin causes swelling, and is prominently observed in the ankles. This condition is known as edema and may continue to affect the body after pregnancy.
Impaired Blood Flow
Poor blood circulation from the feet to the heart is common during pregnancy. This is because the tummy size is significantly big, which puts excessive strain on the veins located in the legs. This can impair blood flow from the legs to the heart. This decreased blood flow in the lower part of the body can cause ankles to swell, which may remain for a few weeks after delivery.
Increase Water Intake
Drinking plenty of water is the best way to discourage the body from retaining fluids and prevent ankles from swelling after delivery. Pregnant women should drink at least 10 glasses of water to reduce swelling in the ankles. In case the ankles appear swollen after deliver, one has to drink 7-8 glasses of water. Initially, more water consumption can slightly increase the swelling, but within a couple of hours, the swollen area shows dramatic improvement as the swelling subsides.
It is often observed that exercise takes a back seat during pregnancy. To a certain extent, it is a right decision, but staying away from any physical activity is not recommended. Walking for 15-20 minutes daily can help to decrease swelling in the ankles and feet. Once the baby is born, the women can slowly start increasing her physical activity as long as she feels comfortable doing it. Exercises like swimming (if possible) and yoga can be a good remedy to reduce ankle swelling.
Elevate the Feet
In order to improve blood circulation from the legs to the heart, keeping the feet in an elevated position while sitting or sleeping, can certainly alleviate the swelling.
Choose Healthy Foods
Eating the right food is important to prevent swollen ankles at the time of pregnancy. With higher intake of salty foods, the body tend to retain more fluids, which can aggravate this condition. So, it is necessary to reduce salt intake to reduce and prevent ankle swelling. Processed foods such as soup and chips contain a high amount of salt, hence must be avoided.
Wear Support Hose
There are a number of products available in the market, designed to alleviate this condition. Wearing ankle-high compression socks (stockings) or hose can help to ease the swelling. However, make sure that the socks are not very tight.
On the whole, swollen ankles after delivery can be easily treated and visiting a doctor is not necessary. Following the aforementioned remedies is all that is required to get rid of ankle swelling.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.