Obstetrics and Gynecology Specialist Op. Dr. Meral Sönmezer gave important information about the subject. Edema, which is called swelling in the tissues as a result of the accumulation of water in a part of the body, is one of the most common ailments, especially during pregnancy. In the later stages of pregnancy, swelling, especially in the hands, feet, ankles, legs and even the face, adversely affects the quality of daily life and can cause difficulties in closing the hands, standing and even walking.
What Causes Edema During Pregnancy?
The volume of blood circulating in the veins of women during pregnancy is approximately 50% higher than before pregnancy. With the excess blood volume, there is some expansion in the vessels and some of the excess fluid leaks into the tissues outside the vessel and accumulates between the cells. As a result, swelling in the tissues is called edema. Especially in late pregnancy, there is more pressure on the veins leading to the legs, making it harder for blood to return to the heart and causing more fluid to accumulate in the feet, ankles and legs.
Factors that increase edema during pregnancy are as follows;
- Physiological and hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy,
- Pregnancy in summer or in hot and humid environments,
- Being overweight before pregnancy or rapid weight gain during pregnancy
- Unbalanced and inadequate nutrition during pregnancy,
- Not getting enough protein and high salt and caffeine consumption.
- Still life,
- Do not stand for long periods of time,
- Twin or multiple pregnancy.
What are the Ways to Prevent Edema During Pregnancy?
- Take care not to stand for long periods of time and raise your feet as often as possible during the day and try to keep them up for a while. You can get support from the wall for this.
- Do not sit with your legs crossed.
- Dress comfortably during pregnancy, avoid clothes that are too tight for your body. If the swelling is very uncomfortable, you can use support stockings produced for pregnant women.
- Try to exercise regularly. Take short walks during the day and avoid sitting and sitting for long periods of time.
- Do not use tight socks and choose comfortable shoes.
- Drink plenty of fluids, take care to drink at least 8-10 glasses of water a day to meet the needs of you and your baby. Contrary to popular belief, drinking water does not increase bloating, it facilitates the removal of waste materials that increase bloating.
- Pay attention to your diet. Take care to get enough protein, as protein-poor diets will increase the formation of edema. Likewise, too salty foods increase edema, so limit your salt intake and try not to overdo it. Avoid acidic drinks and alcohol. You can get support from foods such as probiotic yogurts, pineapple, pomegranate, kiwi, which act as an edema reliever during pregnancy.
- Edema during pregnancy is harmless most of the time, but especially if the edema is accompanied by headache and abdominal pain, it is important that you consult your doctor and do not miss your doctor's check-ups, as there may be a symptom of hidden diabetes or hypertension during pregnancy.