Remedies For Extremely Swollen Legs And Feet

Pregnancy is a common cause of swollen feet.

Extreme swelling in the feet and legs, medically known as peripheral edema, may be caused by pregnancy, obesity or periods of long standing or sitting. Swelling also may indicate more serious problems, such as blood clots, a leg infection or a serious injury to the leg or foot. In prolonged cases of peripheral edema, the swollen area may show signs of “pitting” or prolonged indentation when the area is pressed.

Solve Any Immediate Concerns

Reverse any possible causes of the swelling. If you’re experiencing swelling in your feet and legs, take a minute to reflect on any recent changes that may have instigated the swelling. For example, patients taking a new medication may experience an allergic reaction that causes extreme swelling. Other potential causes include laxative or diuretic abuse, birth control use or injury to the leg or foot.

Elevate Your Legs and Feet

Treat the swelling by resting your legs and feet in an elevated position using a recliner or wedge pillow. Try wearing shoes or supportive socks designed to prevent ankle swelling. Many times, these measures can reduce or eliminate swelling. Compression socks can be purchased online and at medical supply stores for a low cost. Corrective shoes are more expensive, but may be important in reducing the swelling. If you choose to purchase shoes, wait until at least halfway through the day to shop. The swelling common at the end of the day may heavily affect your shoe size.

Improve Diet and Exercise

If foot and leg swelling persists, try increasing your exercise. This movement helps the blood eliminate the excess fluid that causes the swelling. In addition, begin eating a low-sodium diet. Sodium is a major contributor to water retention. Diuretics may be used for a short time to help eliminate the excess fluid. Only use diuretics under the supervision of a doctor or pharmacist. Too much diuretic intake may increase the swelling.

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Seek Medical Treatment

Consult a doctor if the swelling becomes a continual problem, especially if you have chest pain, a fever or if the swollen area is hot to the touch. Often foot and leg swelling is the result of an underlying problem that must receive medical treatment. Note when you first observed the swelling and the methods you have used to resolve the problem. This knowledge can help your doctor choose what treatment to recommend.