Water retention during pregnancy: how to avoid it?

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Water retention during pregnancy: how to avoid it?

Resulting from excessive water storage in the tissues, water retention is a problem that mainly affects women. The phenomenon is frequently accentuated during pregnancy. Legs, ankles, feet, hands, arms or even faces are then abnormally inflated. Causing a sensation of discomfort and pain, the retention of water is more unflattering for the silhouette. However, useful tricks exist to combat this inconvenience.

Water retention during pregnancy: how to avoid it?
Water retention during pregnancy: how to avoid it?

Water retention: what is it exactly?

The human body of an adult is mainly composed of water. The proportion is around 60%: this corresponds to about 42 liters of water in an individual weighing 70 kg. Water retention is characterized by an unusual and unusually large accumulation of water in one or more parts of the body. In other words, it occurs when the body stores more water than it evacuates. This is called “edema.” The phenomenon is explained very simply: the organism does not manage to circulate the liquids properly that it contains. Moreover, it also fails to normalize their quantity. The dilation of the various blood vessels then allows these liquids to filter out, which will then invade the tissues. The consequences are not long in coming: swelling of one or more parts of the body. It is usually the legs, ankles, and feet that are most affected. The sensation of ” thick legs ” results from this phenomenon.

How is it manifested and what are its causes?

Water retention is a problem that mainly affects women, especially during pregnancy. The third quarter is the most difficult period to bear when suffering from this inconvenience. The reason is simply explained: the uterus exerts a critical pressure on the vena cava. The latter usually allows the blood to ascend from the lower limbs to the heart. The development of the uterus during pregnancy firmly compresses this vein. Result ? Blood circulation is slower, and fluids tend to stagnate in the legs and feet. The tissues then swell with water and cause the famous swellings.

One of the other causes of water retention during pregnancy is the sudden hormonal upheaval during these few months. The increase in the level of progesterone results in the decrease of salt in the body. The body reacts accordingly: it stores sodium and water excessively.

The consequences of the problem can quickly be troublesome: discomfort and difficulties to move, feelings of tiredness, nervousness, unsightly swelling, low morale …

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How to avoid it?

The retention of water can quickly spoil the life of a future mother: annoying and uncomfortable in everyday life; it is also less aesthetic. Fortunately, simple and useful tricks exist:

  • Sleeping legs slightly elevated;
  • Avoid as much as possible staying too long and too often standing;
    prefer comfortable maternity wear in tight clothes and tight;
  • Unless contraindicated by the doctor, practice daily physical activity (walking or swimming are ideal in this case);
  • Prefer warm showers to hot baths;
  • Think of compression stockings;
  • Do not hesitate to pass fresh water on the legs to relieve the sensation of heaviness;
  • Avoid too spicy and salty foods;
  • Contrary to what one would be tempted to think, drinking at least 1.5 liters of water is essential when suffering water retention. A good hydration contributes to the drainage and limits the risks of urinary infections;
  • Gently massage the swollen body parts to promote healthy blood circulation.

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