Puffy feet and swollen hands take place to males and females year round, however they’re specifically typical for pregnant women in hot weather. Considering it’s been sweltering these last couple weeks, I wager there are a lot of pregnant ladies out there who seem like the Stay Puft Marshmallow woman.
What causes swelling?
The main medical word for swelling is edema. Any part of the body can get edema or end up being edematous in response to inflammation. For instance, when you bang your leg on a drawer and you establish a bump, that’s a type of edema. The type of edema pregnant women experience in their feet, ankles, calves, hands and face is a bit various, considering that it doesn’t include injury. In truth, the majority of the time, edema is a typical part of a healthy pregnancy.
Women circulate about 50% more blood and body fluids during pregnancy and the body does not constantly need all of it at the same time. If it’s hot or we’re a little dehydrated and our body requires more fluid to stay cool, it interacts with our kidneys and makes a demand.
The kidneys then process body fluids to give the right body parts what it requires by shifting fluids back into the bloodstream or removing what it doesn’t need by shunting it out of the body through urine production. If it’s hot for a while, our body may choose that in addition to providing our body with the fluids it requires, it’s going to save a little for later on. Hands and feet make best storage containers. That’s why, when it’s hot, we get puffy.
You may also observe a little swelling when you’ve exercised, been standing or walking a while, you’re especially exhausted, or you’ve been eating a great deal of salted foods or drinking caffeinated drinks. Gravity can make excess fluids swimming pool in our hands and feet, which is why standing and walking make your hands and feet feel heavy. Salty foods make a great deal of people retain fluids and caffeine makes us dehydrated.
What’s the solution?
- Drink more water. It keeps the kidneys from thinking you’re going to be chronically dehydrated and helps flush salt out.
- Fight gravity with gravity– Whenever possible, put your feet up on a stool or lie down at night with your hands and feet on pillows.
- Drink less caffeine– Even though caffeine makes you pee which’s how you get rid of excess fluids, it also causes dehydration. When you’re dehydrated, your kidney’s say, “hi, she’s transferred to the dessert! Hang on to all the water you’ve got,” so you retain fluid.
- Watch the salt– Not too much, not too little. Keep your salt intake ideal. Practically nobody in America is at risk for taking in too little salt (sodium). Rather, we’re most likely to get way excessive. Read your food labels and minimize your salt consumption.
- Exercise– it keeps your circulatory system running at optimal performance. Once again, it seems not logical that if you get puffy while working out, that workout is a solution, however physiology is challenging that way.
Swelling isn’t simply a pregnancy thing. We can get edematous whenever our body has excess fluid to process, for instance, after we’ve had the baby. That extra 50% of fluid we’ve been loading for 9 months has to go someplace. While the kidneys are very effective at removing it within a few days to a week or so after birth, it may need to take care of it in batches. So what does it do with the rest? Storage! That’s why many women get puffy feet and/or pee like a fire hose pipe after delivery, especially if they’ve gotten a lot of IV fluids during labor.
When is edema not normal?
When it begins unexpectedly or is associated with other symptoms, like badly decreased urine production, hypertension, vision changes, stomach pains, headaches, exhaustion and more. All these symptoms signal difficulty and may suggest the kidneys, heart, lungs or other important organs aren’t functioning correctly. Let your doctor or midwife understand right away if this happens.