Tingling Hands and Swollen Feet During Pregnancy

During pregnancy, our bodies undergo immense amounts of change, which can lead to different body symptoms. Pregnant individuals often simply want to know if their symptoms are safe or something to be concerned about. Let’s talk about tingling hands and swollen feet during pregnancy, what to know, what to do, and when to be concerned.

What Causes Tingling Hands During Pregnancy?

Tingling hands in pregnancy can occur for many different reasons. Some of the most common reasons for tingling hands would be the increase of excess fluids in the body that can cause swelling in the hands and wrists, which causes that tingling sensation or numb hands during pregnancy. Another cause of tingling hands during pregnancy is caused by carpal tunnel syndrome. Carpal tunnel syndrome can cause tingling, numbness, weakness, and pain, especially when there is pressure on the median nerve in the wrist. Carpal tunnel syndrome often goes away after pregnancy, but it can occasionally continue.

How to Find Relief

Different things can be done to help with the sensation of tingling hands during pregnancy, but it is more common that pregnant individuals cannot avoid this symptom. One thing that can be done to help with the tingling of hands is wearing a wrist splint. Wrist splints can be especially useful at night. Other ideas would be strengthening the wrist with different exercises, switching up activities when repetitive, and gentle massage. Some medications can be taken if the Carpal tunnel pain is severe.

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When to Talk to an Expert

The best way to ensure that the tingling sensation in your hands is not concerning is to share that you are experiencing it with your care provider. There are times when tingling and numbness in the hands are symptoms of preeclampsia. If your care provider suspects this, they will run more tests to confirm whether or not this symptom is worrisome. 

What Causes Swelling in the Feet During Pregnancy?

Swelling in the feet during pregnancy can be a typical experience of many birthing individuals during the last months of their pregnancy. Some everyday things that can cause swelling in the feet to increase are heat, high or low activity levels, average uterine growth, and tight clothing. There are times when a drastic increase of swelling or swelling that does not go away with rest can be concerning. A good rule of thumb is to let your care provider know when you get swelling and if there is any drastic increase or if it does not go away when you sleep at night.

How to Find Relief

Some things that may help with swelling are elevating your feet, changing activities from sitting to standing and walking or from walking around to resting, sleeping on your left side, using compression socks, soaking your feet in the water, significantly colder water or water with Epsom salts, wearing loose clothing, intaking sodium with the rule of thumb, salt to taste, increase potassium intake, increase hydration, get a massage, walk or swim, and stay out of the heat.

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When to Talk to an Expert

Sometimes the swelling is inevitable despite doing the above-mentioned things, but even decreasing the swelling can provide an immense amount of relief. Typically swelling increases towards the end of the day and comes on gradually. This type of swelling is most commonly not harmful to you or your baby, but sharing it with your care provider is still important. 

Pre-eclampsia swelling often comes on quickly, drastically increases to swelling you have never had before, does not go away when you rest at night, and cannot be decreased through the above-mentioned ideas. Suppose your care provider thinks you may have pre-eclampsia. In that case, they will run further testing like a urinalysis, checking your blood pressure, and asking other questions like whether or not you have had headaches, visual changes, trouble breathing, belly or shoulder pain, nausea and vomiting, and rapid weight gain. Swelling with these symptoms, even if the swelling does not seem to be increased or drastic, can be a sign of preeclampsia. Your care provider should be notified immediately.

Takeaway

Listening to your body is crucial. You are the expert on your body and this pregnancy. If something feels off or your swelling and tingling feel abnormal, informing your care provider is a good idea.

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