Our Knowledgeable Texas Podiatrists Discuss Surprising Causes of Swollen Feet

If your feet swell but you don’t know the cause and there doesn’t seem to be an obvious reason for it, you should see a podiatrist right away. They will discuss your specific situation and whether there are lifestyle behaviors or circumstances you can easily modify or if you might be suffering from a medical condition that needs attention. Reasons your feet might be swelling

If you’re experiencing swollen feet, make an appointment with the skilled foot doctors at Alliance Foot & Ankle Specialists so our team can help determine the cause of the swelling and discuss treatment. Here, we discuss some of the most common causes of swollen feet and what to do about it.

Common Reasons Your Feet Swell

Swollen feet can occur due to a variety of reasons—some easily managed and some requiring medical intervention. It’s common for people to develop swollen feet after standing or sitting for long periods of time at a job or being overweight or pregnant. But there are other reasons you may experience swollen feet, including the following:

Wearing Shoes That Are Too Tight

Wearing ill-fitting shoes can cause a variety of foot problems, including foot swelling. When you wear shoes that are too tight, they can restrict circulation and blood flow in the feet, resulting in swelling and pain. This issue can easily be corrected by wearing shoes that fit properly and that give your toes and feet plenty of space.

Eating Salty Foods

Too much salt can have a negative impact on your feet. Foot swelling can sometimes be caused by fluid retention, also known as edema, which can be brought on by a variety of factors, including eating salty food. Although salt is necessary for many body functions and helps maintain the body’s fluid and electrolyte balance, too much can harm the health of your lower extremities. When you have more sodium in your body than usual, your kidneys may retain water to maintain that balance. Thus, more fluid remains in your blood, and this excess can get into the tissues that surround your ankles and feet, causing swelling.  

Taking Certain Medications

If you take a medication that causes water retention, you may also experience swollen feet. Some medications that may cause your feet to swell include the following:

  • Antidepressants
  • Diabetes medication
  • Hormones, such as testosterone and estrogen
  • Blood pressure medication
  • Steroids, including corticosteroids and androgenic and anabolic
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications

Spending Time in Hot Weather

Spending time outdoors in the heat and humidity of summer can cause your feet to swell. Hot weather causes your blood vessels to expand to cool down your body. But this process can allow fluid to leak into the surrounding tissues, which can cause puffiness in your feet and other extremities.

Suffering a Blood Clot

If a blood clot blocks your veins, it can prevent the proper flow of blood, causing swelling. If the blood clot is a deep vein thrombosis (DVT), it occurs deep in the leg veins, and blood can’t properly empty from the leg. When this happens, pressure builds up in the veins and forces fluid into the surrounding tissues.

Suffering Preeclampsia

Foot swelling during pregnancy isn’t usually indicative of a problem. But if it’s paired with other symptoms such as high blood pressure, trouble breathing, nausea, or abdominal pain, it’s a possible indicator of preeclampsia, which is a serious condition. Pregnant women should immediately report these symptoms to their physician.

Suffering a Foot Injury

Foot injuries can lead to swelling of the affected area. For example, when you sprain, fracture, or bruise one of your feet, this will naturally lead to inflammation and swelling. Assuming you get proper treatment for the injury, the swelling will start to diminish on its own as the injury starts to heal.

Suffering Liver or Kidney Problems

If you have chronic liver disease or kidney disease, it can create a buildup of fluid in your abdomen, lower extremities, and/or legs. It’s important to see a podiatrist right away if you have swelling for no apparent reason accompanied with the need to urinate more often, yellowing skin, or redness on the palms of your hands.

Suffering Foot Infections

Some foot swelling is caused by an infection. When bacteria gets into a skin crack or cut on your foot, the affected area will likely hurt, turn red, and swell. A foot infection can start from something as simple as a blister or an open wound on the foot. If you have diabetes, foot infections are especially serious and need to be addressed by a skilled podiatrist immediately.

Being Overweight

Obesity and excess body weight are contributing factors to swollen feet. When a person is overweight, they often have decreased blood circulation, causing swollen feet. Additionally, people who carry more weight put more pressure on their feet, which may cause pain when they walk or stand. If this pain minimizes their daily physical activity, fluid may become trapped in the tissue around their feet. If you put on even a few additional pounds, this can have serious consequences for your feet.

Suffering From Foot Arthritis

Arthritis is a painful condition that often impacts the joints in a person’s feet, toes, or ankles. Several types of arthritis that commonly affect these areas can cause swelling in the feet, including osteoarthritis, psoriatic arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and gout.  

Suffering Venous Insufficiency

Venous insufficiency is a medical condition in which the veins in a person’s legs cannot return blood to their heart effectively. As a result, blood pools in their lower extremities, leading to swelling in their feet, ankles, or legs. This condition can be a complication of varicose veins but can also occur in people who do not have varicose veins.

Suffering Congestive Heart Failure

Swollen feet are very common in people living with congestive heart failure. With this condition, the person’s heart isn’t able to pump blood effectively. When this happens, fluid tends to accumulate in the lower extremities and cause swelling. Foot swelling can be dangerous in a person with this condition, as it can be an indicator that their heart failure is getting worse.

Call Our Team for Swollen Feet

Determining the cause of your swollen feet is essential to finding an effective treatment, so it’s in your best interest to seek medical attention if you are experiencing this type of problem.

The podiatric team at Alliance Foot & Ankle Specialists is here to help. Our skilled foot and ankle doctors have experience diagnosing and treating many conditions that cause swollen feet, as well as other foot and ankle issues. Our team will work with you to identify what is causing your feet to swell and to advise you of appropriate treatment options so you can make an informed decision about how to move forward.

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