Slight swelling is expected during pregnancy; however, if you experience sudden swelling in your hands and your face, it could be a sign of preeclampsia. It is important to contact your health care provider about any sudden swelling.
What can you do to treat swelling during pregnancy?
Swelling may be reduced by eating foods that are high in potassium, such as bananas, and by avoiding caffeine. Here are some other helpful hints to manage swelling during your pregnancy:
- Avoid standing for long periods
- Minimize outdoor time when it is hot
- Rest with your feet elevated
- Wear comfortable shoes, avoiding high heels if possible
- Wear supportive tights or stockings
- Avoid clothes that are tight around your wrists or ankles
- Rest or swim in a pool
- Use cold compresses on swollen areas
- Drink water, which helps flush the body and reduce water retention
- Minimize sodium (salt) intake and avoid adding additional salt to meals
Compiled using information from the following sources:
Mayo Clinic Guide To A Healthy Pregnancy Harms, Roger W., M.D., et al, Part 3.
Pregnancy, Childbirth and the Newborn: The Complete Guide. Simkin, Penny, P.T., et al, Ch. 6.