Effect of Pregnancy on Your Feet
Over-Pronation, also referred to as flat feet, is caused when a person’s arch flattens out upon weight bearing and their feet roll inward while walking. This can create extreme stress or inflammation on the plantar fascia, the fibrous band of tissue that runs from the heel to the forefoot.
Edema normally occurs in the latter part of pregnancy. Edema results from the extra blood accumulated during pregnancy. The enlarging uterus puts pressure on the blood vessels in the pelvis and legs causing circulation to slow down and blood to pool in the lower extremities.
Varicose veins in pregnant women result when increased levels of the progesterone hormone cause blood vessels to relax. Changes in weight and body shape, coupled with the extra pressure your baby puts on your body causes your leg veins to dilate and work less efficiently.
Due to the natrual weight gain during pregnancy, a woman’s center of gravity is altered. This shift causes both feet to create new weight-bearing stance while adding pressure to the legs and feet. Also, a woman’s body releases the hormone “relaxin” which relaxes all of the body’s ligaments to allow for the natural birth process. This hormone also causes the ligaments int eh feet to relax which results in the arches to collapse and the feet to become larger and wider.
Unless told by your doctor to stay off your feet, properly supporting the feet with a pair of custom made orthotics and proper footwear will allow for the maximum support to relieve the symptoms of foot pain during pregnancy. By correcting the positioning of an over-pronated foot, a pair of custom made orthotics can offer several advantages throughout pregnancy:
- Postural improvements
- Joint stress reduction
- Treating over-pronation
- Support of ligaments
- Increased comfort while walking and exercising