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Pregnancy and Your Feet

feet during pregnancyPregnancy is a wonderful experience however it doesn’t come without its complaints. Changes
to the body associated with pregnancy can trigger many problems in the feet and legs. Foot
pain is one problem that is often overlooked, and least anticipated, but can be a big nuisance for
expecting mothers.

Flat feet

Due to the natural weight gain experienced during pregnancy, a woman’s centre of gravity is
altered. This affects her stance position, and can increase pressures on the knees and feet.
Coupled with elevated hormones in the body that cause ligaments to stretch, the ligaments in
the feet relax and often cause the long arches of the feet to flatten and for overpronation
to occur.

Some things to expect (and tips):

Increased shoe size: Due to the relaxation of the ligaments, the bones start to spread out and
cause feet to become wider and longer. Swelling in the legs and feet can also be a normal part
of pregnancy. Make sure to wear shoes that fit both the width and length.

Plantar fasciitis (heel pain): Your plantar fascia is the band of tissue that supports the arch in
your feet. During pregnancy, the increased weight puts pressure on your feet, which in turn puts
more pressure on your plantar fascia. Try to avoid standing for long periods of time and walking
barefoot. Elevate your feet to take a break and alleviate any swelling. Wearing supportive
well fitted shoes, and if necessary, discuss the potential for orthotics with your podiatrist.

Toenail changes: Nails tend to grow faster during pregnancy. This is normally attributed to a
combination of factors, namely the taking of prenatal vitamins, increased blood volume and
increased circulation of hormones. Because your body is aiming to give nutrients to the baby,
other parts of the body can become deprived. When nails are deprived they can often become
brittle, develop ridges or grooves, or even fall off entirely. These changes usually disappear
after pregnancy. Some things you should avoid: Wearing tight shoes or socks, and cutting nails
too short can cause ingrown toenails. Swollen skin can overlap the corners of short toenails and
cause ingrown toenails. Eating a balanced diet will help provide nutrients to the nails. Over the
course of your pregnancy reaching your toenails becomes increasingly more difficult. It may be
handy to see a podiatrist to get them cut professionally.

I hope you have enjoyed reading.


We have HICAPS available in our clinic, which means that our patients can claim from their private health fund straight away

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Shop 2/17-19 East Parade
Sutherland, NSW 2232

Tel: 02 9542 3491