You may not be able to see them by the end of the pregnancy, but your ankles are down there and they are holding the pressure of the world. Well, maybe not the pressure of the world, but the pressure of your pregnancy. Ankle swelling is a part of pregnancy most women experience at some time or another. Slight swelling can be expected, but severe ankle swelling can be caused by something more than the natural effects of pregnancy.
What causes ankle swelling?
Ankle swelling is most commonly caused by increased water retention and production. Something that happens normally during most pregnancies. The body needs more fluid during pregnancy so it holds on to more and that means edema or swelling. Ankles tend to show swelling more prominently because walking and sitting for long periods allows water to collect in the extremities.
Other factors that may contribute to ankle swelling include pressure on veins due to uterine growth causing slower blood flow and changes in estrogen, progesterone and other reproductive hormones.
How can I avoid ankle swelling?
If you are experiencing ankle swelling, try are few simple changes to ease swelling – at least temporarily.
When is ankle swelling considered dangerous?
If you experience any of the following symptoms, seek medical attention immediately:
Most of the time ankle swelling is just one of those annoying symptoms of pregnancy that you just have to live with until the pregnancy is over, but it can also be a sign of an underlying condition like preeclampsia, so keep your doctor informed of all ankle swelling changes.