Auteur: Podiatre Montreal
With pregnancy, the body undergoes great upheavals in terms of hormones and weight gain. These changes often have a significant impact on the structure and function of the feet. Indeed, the shape of the feet can change during pregnancy, they can lengthen and widen, the arch of the foot can also sag or even flatten. This is related to hormonal changes that will have an influence on ligament laxity, but also to the increase in body weight and changes in posture that will impact the distribution of body weight on the foot.
All these changes can result in the appearance of heel pain during pregnancy. This foot pain in pregnant women is quite common and must be managed to improve the comfort of the pregnant woman. Fortunately, there are solutions to prevent heel pain in pregnant women, but also to treat it.
Prevention of heel pain
Foot pain is common during pregnancy. The causes of foot pain during pregnancy are multiple, but especially to the major changes the body is facing such as the weight gain resulting from pregnancy. It is nevertheless possible to prevent this pain under the heel by adopting good habits such as daily leg massages that can help reduce the swelling of the feet and ankles that often causes foot pain in pregnant women. Several exercises can also help limit pain in the soles of the feet, which often occurs during pregnancy. For example, it can be useful to stretch the arch of the foot and calf with small exercises that are very easy to do alone at home. For example, the soles of the feet can be stretched by leaving the heel on the ground while placing the front of the foot against a wall. In this position, simply bring the knee and bust close to the wall to stretch the arch of the foot.
It is also possible to relieve pain in the soles of the feet and heel and reduce inflammation under the heel by rolling a tennis ball under the foot or a bottle of very cool water. It is also advisable to wear suitable shoes, sandals and slippers that support the arch of the foot and seamless socks to avoid blocking blood circulation. The use of support stockings can also provide some relief from leg pain and fatigue. Finally, diet is an essential factor in general well-being and in the case of leg pain, limiting salt can reduce water retention which has an impact on the legs. While these little tips can relieve the pain in the feet of pregnant women, it is however preferable to consult a specialist in case of recurring foot pain.
Indeed, a specialist will be able to find the exact cause of this situation by studying the symptoms and with an adapted clinical examination. He will be able to determine if it is plantar fasciitis, tendonitis under the heel, ligament pain related to pregnancy or if it is simply a symptom of fatigue following pregnancy. He will be able to study both the causes and symptoms and propose an appropriate treatment according to the diagnosis that will be established.
Consequences and problems of heel pain
Pregnancy causes many ailments among which we can obviously mention the famous morning sickness, fatigue, back pain, but also foot pain. This sensation of pain often manifests itself in the arch of the foot and is often the consequence of a stretching of the plantar fascia, the ligament connecting the toes to the heel. With the weight gain related to pregnancy, the weight of the body is distributed differently, the arch of the foot may flatten, which often leads to an overload of this ligament, which can then become inflamed and cause the famous heel pain during pregnancy.
Among the consequences of this condition are, of course, difficulty in walking, but also swelling of the heel and more or less constant pain waking up especially when pressing on the heel due to an accumulation of fluid in the lower part of the heel.
How to treat heel pain
The sensation of heel pain for a pregnant woman is relatively frequent and benign, it is nevertheless advisable to implement the necessary means to relieve this heel pain during pregnancy. Indeed, the fact of being pregnant causes enough discomfort to moreover support pains which can very well be treated. To this end, the best thing to do is to make an appointment with a health professional who will tell you how to treat this pain.
The most competent health specialist in this type of situation is a podiatrist like our doctor. Such a professional will be able to confirm the diagnosis, but will also be able to propose a quick and appropriate treatment to relieve the pain. He will also be able to suggest inserts to correct posture during pregnancy. He will also be able to give you advice on how to relieve painful feet, such as massaging the painful area, wearing shoes adapted to your feet or wearing orthopedic inserts that he can indicate to you in order to support the arch of the foot. The Podiatrist will also be able to advise you on how to improve circulation in your legs, which is a recurring problem in pregnant women.
Like heel pain, blood circulation in the lower legs is a problem that can be easily managed. In these situations, do not hesitate to consult the appropriate health care professional who will be able to suggest solutions to quickly relieve your pain.