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6 Ways To Prevent Swelling In The Feet And Legs
Swelling in the feet, ankles, and legs is a trait of many different medical conditions and can also be caused by long distance travel, old age, poor circulation, pregnancy, and lack of exercise. The swelling is caused by fluid being retained in the lower part of the body and is medically known as edema. While fluid retention in the legs is not life-threatening, it is certainly uncomfortable to deal with and can cause the sufferer considerable pain, not to mention being unsightly. Take a look at our 6 proven tips to relieve the swelling and restore balance in the body.
1. Elevate your legs
For most, this is likely to be the easiest tip to decrease the swelling. By elevating the legs as high as possible, you allow the fluid to follow gravity and flow back round the body. The best position is to lie flat on your back with your legs propped against the wall, so your body is at a right angle. Various yoga poses are also effective as is propping your legs up on an ottoman.
2. Compression socks
This one is particularly applicable to people who experience swelling because of long distance travel but is equally beneficial to anyone who suffers with fluid retention. Compression socks are widely available in pharmacies and online and are usually elasticated to fit all sizes. By compressing the feet and lower legs, they force the fluid to flow back up into the rest of the body and by doing so, relieves pain and pressure. The socks come in varying weights, which basically refers to the level of compression, so ensure that you buy the right pair for you and consult a medical professional if you are unsure.
As previously mentioned, swelling can be brought on and most definitely made worse by lack of movement and exercise with sitting or standing in one place for too long being a major culprit of fluid retention. If your job involves you sitting at a desk all day, try and get up and walk around as much as possible, and take a brisk walk outside the office every day to ensure proper circulation. Swimming is also an excellent exercise option as it is non-weight bearing. If these options are not available to you, then simple stretches and flexing of the legs and knees can be just as effective.
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4. Take a magnesium supplement
A magnesium deficiency is one of the things that can contribute to fluid retention in the lower limbs, so making sure you have the proper levels of this key mineral in your body is essential in preventing and treating it. Be sure to talk to your doctor first about the correct supplement dosage for you, particularly if you are pregnant, as they are available in varying amounts.
5. Drink plenty of water
Excess salt and dehydration are two other principle causes of edema and staying adequately hydrated actually flushes the excess salt from your system, so effectively killing two birds with one stone! Stick to the recommended 8-10 glasses a day rule and you’re definitely on track. For added benefit, try adding lemon and/or cucumber to water. These both contain huge anti-inflammatory properties to further help your body to restore balance once again.
6. Have a massage
A massage is not only an indulgent, blissful treatment, but it’s also excellent for promoting circulation within the body. The masseuses’ strokes encourage blood and fluids in the body to, well, get moving as they should! Be sure to let the therapist know that this is the area that you’d like to be targeting for maximum results.
Employing a combination of these remedies is an excellent way to banish fluid retention symptoms in the legs, ankles, and feet and to get things circulating properly again reliving tension, pressure, and pain. The best part is that they’re all easy, accessible, and effective and your body will most definitely thank you!