More fluid circulates round your body in pregnancy and, owing to gravity, some of it collects in your feet. If they swell up, avoid tight-fitting socks or shoes, and sit down with your feet up as often as possible. Gentle exercise such as walking or swimming can help disperse the fluids.
Extra supplies of the hormone relaxin can also leave you with aching knee joints. Again, rest up and support your knees where possible.
Although swelling is normal, if it appears suddenly and is accompanied by swelling in your hands and/or face, it may be a sign of preeclampsia. Tell your doctor if this happens at once so they can rule this out or make sure you get appropriate monitoring.
Restless leg syndrome is another frustrating symptom experienced by a number of mums, and also a stinging or tingling sensation in the feet like ‘pins and needles’. There is no ‘cure’ as such, but warm baths, hot or cold compresses, gentle movement and massage may provide some relief.
A word of warning though mummies: it is not uncommon for your feet to increase in size after your pregnancy and birth and remain a size larger. So, think twice before splashing out on any shoes whilst pregnant as a ‘treat’ for post-birth, in case they do not fit!