Wear properly fitting shoes—the right shoes become even more critical when you are carrying a child. As your center of gravity changes, your balance will likely be challenged. Hormones released by your body to relax the ligaments of your birth canal will also loosen the ligaments in your ankle, increasing the chance of an ankle strain or sprain. Shoes with low, wide heels will help minimize these risks. Since the extra pounds of pregnancy can flatten your feet, look for shoes with good arch support to reduce heel and arch pain. You may also notice, particularly in the third trimester, that your feet seem to be growing in size. This is a combination of the ligament-relaxing hormone that may cause your feet to spread a bit combined with the extra weight you’re carrying. You may need to switch to shoes that are wider and a half or whole size larger if your shoes start to feel tight. Failure to do so can force toes together, creating the perfect scenario for an ingrown toenail to develop.
Stretch and Exercise—taking time to stretch your feet in the morning and a few other times during the day can help alleviate arch pain. Continuing a regular, doctor-approved exercise regimen will not only make you feel better, it can help keep off excess weight that will put further strain on your feet.
Rest with your feet up—being on your feet for long stretches aggravates existing conditions and makes all of those listed above worse. If at all possible, take breaks during the course of the day and elevate your feet. The rest of your body will thank you too!
If you notice any changes in your feet while you’re pregnant that are concerning, don’t hesitate to contact our Somers Point office by calling: (609) 927-4894 to arrange an appointment with our podiatrist, Dr. Paul S. DeMarco. Taking good care of your feet will help ensure a healthy pregnancy for you and your baby.