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Mothers-to-be have many things to do. In addition to meeting the new challenges posed by pregnancy, women must also deal with physical changes-especially their feet. According to the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Association, weight gain and hormonal changes during pregnancy can cause foot growth, joint instability, and other muscle pain associated with calf swelling and cramps.
Although many women want to look stylish and cute during pregnancy, podiatrists recommend giving priority to comfort over style. Many of the changes that pregnant women can see on their feet are exacerbated by the use of high heels and unsupported shoes. However, there are many ways to look more feminine without wearing oversized shoes.
From non-slip sandals to running shoes with ankle support, Shop TODAY worked with podiatrists to discuss the best shoes on the market in the past few months. They also discussed the main developments your body will experience during pregnancy.
Expecting a child is a wonderful experience, but it also comes with many trials. In addition to updating your wardrobe to include maternity clothes, your current shoe collection will also be temporarily discontinued. "The more women become pregnant, the need for arch support increases," said Dr. Emily Splichal, a functional podiatrist.
Although it is generally believed that the width and length of the feet will increase during this period, pregnant women will also experience lower arch height, spider nevi and varicose veins, bunions and hammertoes, and lower limb weight and fluid accumulation. "Pregnancy can put a lot of pressure on the feet, which obviously causes pain, aches and fatigue," said Dr. Miguel Cunha, a podiatrist in New York City.
As foot strain and pressure increase, primitive women consider changing shoes. The baby’s weight can cause abnormal pronation of the feet for a long time. In addition, wearing inappropriate shoes will only aggravate the pain and “cause permanent structural changes in the foot, including collapsed arches,” Dr. Cunha added.
Just like your regular skin care routine, the feet also need a beauty program. The weight your body will bear during pregnancy should be accompanied by functional, supportive shoes.
During pregnancy, women are more likely to develop blood clots, also known as deep vein thrombosis (DVT), where blood accumulates in the veins of the lower extremities as they fight gravity. "It is important to wear compression stockings throughout pregnancy to minimize the accumulation of fluid retention in the lower extremities, which can lead to foot pain and the formation of varicose veins," commented Dr. Cunha.
Regardless of your feet and life stage, orthotics can help you redistribute the weight of your feet. Dr. Cunha recommends “wearing custom orthoses because they are personalized support that can relieve any symptoms of pain and discomfort while maintaining proper alignment of the body.”
Walking is the safest exercise and an important activity for maintaining health during pregnancy. Although Dr. Cunha was not keen on running as an exercise during this period, he advised against staying inactive. "Avoid standing or sitting for long periods of time with your legs down. Doing so will increase the swelling of the lower limbs," he pointed out.
Due to hormonal changes, women will experience dry and cracked heels, so regular exfoliation and moisturizing the skin and legs to avoid loss of elasticity are the key. In addition, Dr. Cunha recommends paying attention to other changes in appearance and texture. "In some cases, women with thick, dry, scaly feet think [they] need daily creams to moisturize, but in fact they need anti-fungal creams... because they have fungal infections that cause scales ."
Although walking barefoot can lead to overexposure to bacteria, it can also cause the feet to pronation naturally during the gait cycle. Walking barefoot can cause imbalance, which changes the biomechanics and the distribution of pressure and weight on the foot.
Finally, choose a pair of shoes that can support you in completing daily activities such as running errands and exercising.
"Use the Brannock device to measure your feet," Dr. Cunha suggested. "One technique to determine if the front of your shoe is wide enough is to draw your feet on a piece of paper at the end of the day when your feet are the most swollen. Then, place the shoes on the foot tracking. If the feet are The trajectory is on the periphery of the shoe, then you know that your shoe is too narrow."
Although shoe types like open-back loafers and clogs may be more comfortable choices, in fact, this design speeds up the formation of mallet toes. "Your feet are supporting the slippers, and you can see this every step you take," Dr. Cunha said. "You will grit your teeth and grab the slippers [and] grab them with your feet. Although short-term use of slippers is completely fine, I suggest you buy a pair of stronger shoes to support your arch and your feet to extend [Wear]."
Most women give up high heels in the first trimester of pregnancy, but for those who still stick to their high heels, it's time to store them in a box. "[Women's] growing abdomens lose their balance, making it more difficult to walk in high heels," Dr. Splithal suggested.
Dr. Cunha recommends “Avoid wearing any shoes higher than 0.75 to 1 inch heel height. In general, I usually recommend looking for a shoe with a heel or wedge height of slightly less than 1 inch, rather than being completely flat because it is The Achilles tendon exerts less tension and feels more comfortable."
Surprisingly, these casual sandals are actually worse than walking barefoot at home. "When you are wearing flip-flops, as you take each step, your toes must constantly catch the flip-flops, which can cause or exacerbate the mallet toes," said Dr. Cunha.
Dr. Cunha said: “The heel of women’s sandals should be slightly less than 3/4 inch relative to the front.” “It’s actually better for you than flat shoes because it reduces the pressure on the Achilles tendon, which helps you You should also make sure that the sandals are wide enough at the heel. The forefoot, but the laces are not too loose to avoid injury. Make sure that the shoes are not fragile in the middle. If they are easy to bend, then It means that your arch is not supported enough, which leads to foot pain, such as arch [and] heel pain."
Dr. Splichal recommends avoiding restrictive shoes such as boots to avoid unnecessary stress and pressure on the feet and legs. "Some recommended shoes for pregnant women to provide proper arch support include Oofos sandals, Cole Haan Oxfords and Allbirds," Dr. Splithal added.
Also, please note that some shoes can also cause swelling of the ankle. For example, some women may want to try kitten heels to improve their style, but this type of heel will make them lose their balance. "I recommend that pregnant women wear comfortable supporting walking shoes when going out and supporting sandals when at home," said Dr. Cunha.
If you are still not sure how to continue buying shoes during pregnancy, a safe option is to buy sandals or shoes with the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) approval stamp. These shoes have been found to be beneficial to overall foot health and have substantial arch support.
The wet weather design and high-top style provide perfect support and comfort for swollen feet. These highly rated sneakers are perfect for women seeking extra support in the last few months of pregnancy. One reviewer wrote: “I don’t have too much padding on my little feet, which may be a problem, but Allbirds is my preferred shoe brand. The cushioning, the width of the forefoot and the overall structure are just right.”
If you have not taken maternity leave, please add a pair of elegant Oxford sneakers to your office closet. These sneakers are made with Grand OS technology to provide the best comfort, and the golden tone creates an elegant feel.
Although podiatrists do not recommend wearing open-back shoes, these sandals provide excellent arch support to prevent excessive varus and relieve pain, especially for patients with plantar fasciitis. This sandal has a uniquely designed plantar fascia groove and built-in orthopedic arch support, which can naturally fit the shape of the foot.
Dr. Cunha personally also likes this style. "During the quarantine period, I had the opportunity to fully evaluate Groove flip-flops. I like these... Since the pandemic began in March, I have worn them every day after get off work and on weekends."
This sandal is decorated with a soft bow, which is a good choice if you want to enhance the taste of maternity wear. "These flip-flops are lightweight and have a soft ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) footbed that absorbs vibrations and reduces pressure on the feet, ankles and knees," added Dr. Cunha.
Birkenstock flip-flops are based on cork sandals, and their footbeds provide the same comfort and arch support as the brand. They are also ultra-lightweight, highly flexible, shock-absorbing, waterproof and skin-friendly.
Slip in these sandals after strenuous activity. Oofos sandals are non-slip, ideal if you need a pair to relax your feet after wearing closed-toe shoes.
If you want to seek comfort without compromising the style of maternity wear, these sandals can help. This sandal uses biomechanical footbed technology to redesign the classic flat footbed according to the natural three-dimensional contours of the feet.
These sneakers are luxuriously designed and can be worn after you are pregnant, providing you with the ultimate chic design for your sports and leisure style, while adding supporting footbed technology.
This walking shoe is considered one of the lightest walking shoes on the market. In addition to its light weight, this shoe also comes with additional cushions and is made of synthetic material to make it durable and suitable for long-term wear.
If you are a busy and busy woman, Brooks sneakers are a good investment. "These shoes are not as light as the New Balance Fresh Foam 1165. However, I highly recommend them for people with neutral or low arches because they provide good stability and have additional shock absorption control," Cunha The doctor commented.
Although this style is heavier than the ones mentioned above, they are very durable and can be worn longer. "The advantage of these shoes is that they are designed for all arch types, including hindfoot gel technology and cushioning midsoles, making these shoes one of the most comfortable shoes on the market today," added Dr. Cunha.
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