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How To Prevent Your Foot Changing Size During Pregnancy

How to prevent your foot changing size during pregnancy so you don’t have to buy a whole new shoe wardrobe!

Sounds nice right? How many women have you heard say, I had to buy new shoes after I had kids? Or My feet change sizes after babies? Have you heard this before?

Foot changes during pregnancy can be very common and normal. But here is the best news, there are things you can do to prevent them from changing sizes.

First let’s discuss why these changes happen in the first place.

#1 With increased Relaxin and Progesterone, your joints are looser and more flexible. That means that your feet joints are also affected.

#2 When you have that increased flexibility in your feet and you start to gain weight from the pregnancy, your feet will typically “spread out” more. Stretch in either width or length or both.

#3 This will cause the arches of the feet to flatten. This means that our feet will also become weaker with this type of stretch and new forces through the feet.

When not supported, these new positions of the feet will continue through the postpartum period and usually become your new anatomy.

So what can you do?

You can do two things:

#1 Invest in orthotics that support all three arches of your foot. And make sure you actually wear these more of the time. This will help to support your foot anatomy and will give you the best shot at maintaining your foot size through the duration of your pregnancy and after

#2 Keep your feet strong. Do exercises that help support the natural arches of your foot and keep your intrinsic foot muscles strong so you can support your joints and prevent the arches from collapsing. This puts a lot of strain on the plantar fascia and can cause things like plantar fasciitis, ankle sprain, foot sprains, mortons neuromas and shin splints.

Here at Body Motion We sell custom fit orthotics and flip flops to keep your feet healthy and happy and the same size during your pregnancy. But there are even more effects. The more supported your feet are during pregnancy. The more supported your pelvis is during pregnancy. And guess what!? That means the better your birth can be and also the better your postpartum recovery can be.

I speak from personal experience here. My last pregnancy was my third pregnancy. It was the first time I wore an orthotic that actually supported all three arches of my foot (I have worn some other standard orthotics during the previous two pregnancies). Due to the nature of being a physical therapist, I am constantly on my feet during pregnancy. Therefore, orthotics were always a must. Well after my first two pregnancies, my feet grew a little each time. And by a little, I mean a lot. I was an 8 womens shoe size and now am a 9.5 shoe size. Well I was a 9.5 after my second pregnancy. So needless to say, I did not want my feet to grow during this last pregnancy. But something I had to always deal with after each pregnancy was pain in the outside of my foot (at the base of my 5th metatarsal on my right foot, it goes back to an old pattern I have and pain along the top of my right ankle (long dorsal ligament pain). Well after wearing the custom orthotics during my pregnancy and continuing to wear postpartum, I have simply not had any pain in the outside of my foot or on the top of the ankle. To top it off, I didn’t even change shoe sizes this pregnancy!

So orthotics during pregnancy that are CUSTOM to your arches (all three of them) can save you tons of pain postpartum getting you back to running or whatever exercise you prefer AND help you keep your shoe wardrobe intact.


Allison Feldt

Body Motion Physical Therapy

"We Help Women Through Fertility, Pregnancy, Birth, Postpartum and Beyond So They Can Live Active, Confident, Healthy Lives Without The Need For Medication Or Surgery"

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