Swollen Ankles while Pregnant
Pregnancy is a time of an enormous amount of physical changes for both the developing baby as well as the soon to be mother. The normal hormonal changes that occur affect many aspects of the body including the walls of her veins causing them to relax or dilate. In addition, total blood volume also increases in the first trimester and gradually rises with gestation (up to 45% greater).
Veins contain valves (similar to those in the heart) which encourage blood to flow from the legs back to the heart. With the relaxation of the veins, the valves are unable to close properly and blood begins to flow back towards the feet.
The above challenges involving increased blood volume and lack of proper blood flow lead to congestion in the veins and eventually swelling and leg discomfort. In fact, 80% of females experience swollen ankles while pregnant.
To reduce the swelling in your legs, Assured Health Group Suggests to wear compression socks/stockings, exercise your calf muscles, swim, elevate your feet when possible, and avoid standing in one spot or sitting for prolonged periods of time.