What are some of the reasons for swelling feet?
Swelling Feet Causes
Swollen feet may have a vast number of reasons. The more frequent kind of swelling is called idiopathic edema. Idiopathic edema is very ill defined, but it is not considered dangerous. Often it is likely to identify the reason for the swelling, but often it is not.
Often women undergo swelling feet thru definite times of the menstrual cycle. But this problem is not restricted only to women and not always to a specific time of the month. Swollen feet can often be combined with retaining sodium.
In some cases of swelling feet, it can be severe. So stark that it is uncomfortable. The swelling can cause the skin to stretch, causing itching as well as pain. In these cases, a physician will need to first determine if the swelling is or not a part of a greater health concern.
Swelling in the extremities can be a symptom of heart disease, or problems with kidneys or liver. It is for this reason that it is so important not to ignore swollen feet. If you cannot reduce the swelling with rest or reducing salt in the diet, see your doctor.
Swelling develops by buildup of fluid in the soft tissues. Gravity pulls this fluid to the ankles and feet, causing swelling.
Swelling can also be triggered by problems with the heart, kidney, liver or blood vessels. Some other causes of swelling can be:
- Poor diet which is high in carbohydrates as well as salt
- Taking HRT pills or birth control pills
- Varicose veins
- Sodium retention
- Muscle injury
- A prior history of phlebitis
- Allergic reactions
- Neuromuscular disorders
- Abuse of laxative
- Drug abuse
- Abuse of diuretics
Swelling Feet Treatment
Treatment of swelling feet can be contingent on the cause for the swelling. One of the 1st treatment preferences is to raise the legs above your head or at the level of the heart. Anti-inflammatory drugs can help to also reduce the swelling.
Other options for treatment are:
- Support stocking and socks– these come in several grades contingent on the level of the edema as well as the pressure needed.
- Leg wedges to elevate the feet while sleeping
Tips to help with swelling:
- Cut down on salt as salt causes fluid retention
- Drink lots of water
- Put the feet up – lying on the back, rest the feet by putting them at least 12 inches above the level of the heart for 10 to 15 minutes, 3 or 4 times a day
- Do not abuse laxatives
- Use support stockings – roll these on in the morning in order to promote circulation as well as limit gravitation movement of fluids. Most medical drug stores or medical supply carry them.
- Exercise regularly – this improves circulation
- Avoid long periods of standing in the same place
- Lose excess weight – excess weight slows the circulation of body fluids as well as puts additional pressure on the veins
- Avoid sitting for long periods – Get up and walk every 1 or 2 hours
- Increase muscle activity with walking
- Review any medications with your primary care physician –some medications, including anti-inflammatories, non-steroidal, and calcium channel blockers can add to any swelling of extremities
Complications of swelling
- Additional swelling can develop skin ulcers