The month of May is approaching and that means it is time to honor our mothers. Every Mother’s day our family tradition is to take all the moms in our immediate family, to a nice brunch. During this brunch the conversation will turn towards how much pain they felt in their feet during their pregnancies. So, I of course will end up examining their feet by the end of the brunch. The most common complaints of foot pain during pregnancy is heel and arch pain. My sister’s and my wife all remember that the pain would become so unbearable it would cause them to waddle even more. Heel and arch pain in general is very common but being pregnant can increase the likelihood of developing these symptoms.
The most common pathologies during pregnancy are heel/arch pain, Achille’s tendonitis, swelling of the feet, and neuromas (swollen nerve). The reason why these problems happen is because of the increase in body size and weight. The body is not used to being in this state and therefore the muscles, tendons, and ligaments undergo increased stress. This increased stress on the foot will trigger the body to compensate for pain by recruiting different muscle groups to help stabilize the feet and decrease symptoms. All of this stress, strain, and adjustment of the body will lead to pain and swelling because the feet and legs will fatigue from overuse.
So what can a woman do to prevent these pains from happening? A simple solution is attaining a pair of custom shoe orthotics (inserts). Custom shoe inserts help the feet by supporting the arch and preventing strain to the muscles and ligaments controlling the foot. With this support the stress is greatly reduced and the weight on the feet is distributed evenly across the orthotics. The orthotics can be used as a remedy for all of the above mentioned foot problems. The concept is simple. If we can fully support the foot and place it in a proper positions when walking, then we can prevent overuse and fatigue to the feet.
Swelling of the feet, ankles, and legs can lead to feeling of heaviness and can cause difficulty when walking. With the approval of your Ob-Gyn you can use compression stockings in order to help pump the fluid out of the lower extremity. Walking with compression stockings does help to force the fluid out of the legs and back up to the heart. Elevating the legs for a period of time prior to putting on the socks may help with the struggle of trying to get the socks on. A donning device for compression stockings can also be used to help get the stockings on with little effort.
If you or a loved one are expecting a new edition to the family then I would highly consider getting fitted for custom orthotics immediately in order to prevent any future problems. Call 813-975-0555 today to schedule your appointment with any of our three doctors. Drs. Katz, Cruz, and Patel are eager to help prevent your feet from ever hurting again.