What to Do If You Have Edema

Edema is swelling in consequence of excess fluid trapped in your body’s tissues. Although edema can affect any part of your body, you may see it more in your hands, feet, arms, ankles and legs.

edema in legs

Taking medication to remove excess fluid and reducing the amount of salt in your food often relieves edema. When edema is a symptoms of an underlying disease, the disease itself requires separate treatment.

Edema frequently happen as the result of a number of underlying health issues, including congestive heart failure, kidney damage or kidney disease, liver cirrhosis, chronic venous deficiency, or severe lung conditions. Talk to your doctor if you experience swelling to assist figure out the cause and what
treatment is needed.

Edema has many several causes:

  • Edema can happen as a result of gravity, especially from sitting or standing in one place for long time. Water naturally gets pulled down into your feet and legs.
  • Some drugs, such as medications that you are taking for your blood pressure or to manage pain, may make or worsen edema.
  • Certain diseases, such as congestive heart failure and lung, kidney, liver, and thyroid diseases, can make edema or make it worse.
  • Edema can occur from a weakening in the valves of the veins in the legs (a condition known as venous insufficiency). This issues makes it hard for the veins to push blood back up to the heart, and leads to varicose veins and a buildup of fluid in the legs.
  • An allergic reaction, burns, severe inflammation, trauma, clot(s), or poor nutrition can also cause edema.

When fluid accumulates in tissues, it’s known as edema. While edema usually resolves on its own, there are some treatments that may reduce the swelling more quickly and increase your own comfort. Here are some to try.

Compression socks

Compression socks can be discover at a drug or grocery store or even bought online. Begin with compression socks that are between 12 to 15 mm or 15 to 20 mm of mercury. They come in a variety of weights and compressions, so it might be best to start off with lighter-weight socks, and then discover the type that provides the most relief.

Drink 8 to 10 glasses of water per day

Though it might seem counterintuitive, getting enough fluids actually assist reduce swelling. When your body isn’t hydrated enough, it holds onto the fluid it does have. This contributes to swelling.

Elevate your feet, preferably above your heart

Prop your feet on pillows, cushions, or even things like phone books, when you sleep. If you’re looking to reduce foot swelling while you pregnant, attemp elevating your feet several times a day as well. Aim for about 20 minutes at a time, even on an ottoman or a chair. Try to keep away of standing for long periods of time and stay off your feet when you can.

Lose weight if you’re overweight

Being overweight can cause reduced blood circulation, leading to swelling of the lower extremities. It can also lead to extra strain on the feet, causing pain when walking. This can result in being more sedentary, which can also make fluid buildup in the feet.

Losing weight can help ease the strain on feet and possibly decrease foot swelling as well. Talk with your medical doctor about whether you need to lose weight, and healthy ways to go about doing so.

Edema in Legs Symptoms and Causes

When to see your doctor

Each individual is different. Depending on what’s causing the swelling, some of these treatment might not be effective all of the time for everyone. If one doesn’t work, don’t hesitate to try another, or use one in conjunction with another.

If none of these treatments alleviate your swollen feet or you notice other symptoms that accompany your swollen feet, call your medical doctor. These signs and symptoms could indicate an underlying health condition that needs to be treated. Your medical doctor may prescribe diuretics if they think that medical steps are important to reduce the fluid retention.

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