How To Cure Pitting Edema During Pregnancy Naturally?

Pregnant women have a lot to put up with. From the ever expanding belly, hormonal changes, morning sickness, and ofcos not leaving behind the weird stares we get when we happen to be in public while pregnant. As if that’s not enough we also have to put up with pitting edema during pregnancy. Personally, I was a victim to it and given the fact that I really got stressed over minor things this nearly knocked me out. I guess the only thing that kept me going was the fact that I longed to hold my angel in my arms.

What is edema and is edema during pregnancy normal?

emeda during pregnancy

An edema is a swelling that is caused by excess fluid being trapped between the tissues in your body. There are two types of edemas pitted edema and non-pitted edema. Pitted edema is the kind that forms an indentation when pressure is applied on the swollen area whereas non-pitted edema doesn’t leave an indentation when pressure is applied on the swollen area.

Personally, on my first pregnancy when I developed pitted edema I was so stressed and thought something was wrong with either my health or my pregnancy. Despite my spouse trying to convince me that it was normal this didn’t stop me from going to my doctor. It was then that I learned that pitted edema during pregnancy is a common issue and if you are having a healthy pregnancy you shouldn’t have anything to worry about.

Research has it that over 80% of the pregnant women will develop edema either pitted or non-pitted at one point in their pregnancy. If you were about to go and visit a doctor due to the pitted edema developing on your ankles or extremities save your energy. Pitted edema is quite common during pregnancy, especially in the second and third trimester.

What causes pitted edema during pregnancy?

Now that we know that pitted edema during pregnancy is common it would be useful to look at the various things that cause the edema and ways in which you can avoid developing it. To begin with, pitted edema mostly develops on the legs and especially the ankles, the extremities and at times hands and fingers. The following are the major causes of pitted edema during pregnancy:

1. Increased body pressure

As times passes your belly will expand. But it’s normal, right? I mean the baby is getting big and that’s a good thing, isn’t it? However, as the uterus expands this may exact pressure on the vena cava which is the major vein that transports blood from the legs back to the heart. This pressure might hinder the smooth flow of blood back to the heart and as a result causing your legs to swell and develop pitted edema.

2. Blood pooling

During pregnancy the volume of fluids in the body increases. And it’s not only the fluids that increase but also the volume of blood being circulated in your body. Hello! You are carrying a life in you that solely depends on you for oxygen, food… in other words everything. Given the high volume of blood being circulated in your body, this might cause the small blood vessels in your body to leak some blood to the body tissues, as a result, causing pitted edema.

3. High blood pressure

Quite a number of women develop high blood pressure during their pregnancy and it’s understandable given all the things they have to put up with during the 9 months. High blood pressure may cause the body to swell and at times cause pitted edema.

4. Excessive intake of salt

I am the kind of person who loves to add salt to already cooked food. Research has it that taking too much salt can cause pitted edema since salt increases water retention in the body.

How to cure pitted edema naturally?

How to cure pitted edema naturally

Taking medication during pregnancy can be quite a challenge given that most of it can cause complications in your pregnancy. On the brighter side, if you are suffering from pitted edema you don’t have to take any medication so as to cure the edema that has developed on you. This article will walk you through the various natural ways in which you can cure edema while at the comfort of your home.

1. Exercise

Pregnant women are lazy, right!? Honestly, it would be harsh to call any pregnant woman lazy. We have a lot to deal with during this time and we get tired so easily. Before getting pregnant I used to wake up early in the morning make my spouse some breakfast as I do some house chores before heading to work. Well, after getting pregnant things changed, I used to wake up headed to the bathroom to vomit due to morning sickness. When I was in the third trimester of my pregnancy all I did was sleep and I guess this would explain why I had quite a problem with pitted edema. It is recommended that you do some exercise so as to stretch your muscles and as a result reduce the risk of getting pitted edema during pregnancy. Well, by exercise I don’t mean you go to the gym and lift 200 pounds of weight. Just ensure that you don’t stay seated for long. Take a walk around the house or maybe to the grocery shop.

2. Adopt a healthy sitting posture

The following are some of the things you need to avoid so as to reduce the risk of having pitted edema during pregnancy:

  • Avoid crossing your legs while sitting
  • Avoid walking bare feet
  • Avoid wearing tight socks or stockings
  • Wear comfortable shoes that can stretch

3. Adopt a healthy diet

Avoid taking too much salt and junk food. Instead, eat a balanced diet and take plenty of water to ensure that you stay hydrated all the time. Pediatricians recommend at least 8 glasses of water in a day.

4. Appropriate treatment

We mentioned earlier that the most affected part is usually the feet. As a remedy, you can soak your feet in warm water so as to reduce the pressure on the blood vessels. You can also opt for a professional feet massage.

When to see a doctor?

Under most cases, you don’t have to see a doctor if you are having pitted edema during pregnancy. However, if you experience the following it is advisable you visit your doctor for check up.

  • Rise in blood pressure
  • Reduction in baby movement
  • Protein in urine
  • A severe headache or blurred vision
  • Blood clot


It is my hope that you enjoyed this tutorial and most importantly found it useful. Most women develop pitted edema during pregnancy but on the brighter side if this happens to you now know of natural ways to deal with it. Don’t keep all this knowledge to yourself, share this article with a friend or two and don’t forget to leave a comment in the comment section below.

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Jennifer Shackelford

Hi, I’m Jennifer, the founder and editor of On The Mama Needs, I write about experience with pregnancy, raising kids, and nutrition for both kids and expectant moms.. I love that blogging brings parents together and lets our readers know they’re not the only ones going through these experiences. I love seeing comments on my posts that say “I thought it was just me! I’m so glad it’s not!” Being a parent is hard, but friends and blogs really help.

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