You will feel much better if you take a break to put your feet up, especially if they are swollen. Whether they are swollen from pregnancy or because you walked too much, you may feel more comfortable lifting them up. If you do, you can reduce inflammation, keep feet healthy, and make sure they're ready for whatever activities you enjoy doing.
Part 1 of 3: lifting and resting your feet
Step 1. Take out your shoes
Remove your shoes and socks before lifting your feet. Shoes can cause blood to stagnate in the feet, which encourages inflammation. Socks can have the same effect, especially if they are tight around the ankle. Wiggle your toes a bit to get the blood flowing.
Step 2. Lie down on a comfortable sofa or bed
Stretch your body on a large sofa or on the bed while lying on your back. Make sure you have plenty of space and don't feel like you're going to fall out of it. Raise your back and neck with one or two pillows if it can help you feel comfortable.
Avoid lying flat on your back if you are more than three months pregnant. Your uterus may press on a central artery, which will stop blood flow, the opposite effect to what you want. Place two or three pillows behind your back so that you are raised to an angle of at least 45 degrees
Step 3. Use cushions to lift the feet
Place them under your feet and under your ankles to lift them up. Stack as much as you need to get your feet above heart level. By doing this, you are helping the blood not to pool in the feet, which will make it easier for the heart.
You might also feel more comfortable putting a cushion or two under your calves to support your feet
Step 4. Keep them in position for 20 minutes
Regular 20-minute breaks should help reduce inflammation. You can take the opportunity to read your emails, watch a movie, or do other chores that don't require you to be on your feet.
- If you are injured, for example if you have sprained your ankle, you should put your feet up more often. Try to keep them in this position for two to three hours a day.
- If you notice that the inflammation does not go away using this technique for several days, you should make an appointment with your doctor.
Step 5. Place your feet on a footrest when seated
You could reduce their inflammation even by lifting them up a little every day. Use any type of footrest to raise your limbs off the ground whenever possible. This position will improve blood circulation.
You can buy a small footrest that you put under your desk if you spend a lot of time sitting at work
Step 6. Apply ice if it relieves you
Use an ice pack wrapped in a thin towel to rest it on your raised feet for up to ten minutes each time. Wait an hour between each application. This helps reduce inflammation and ease any discomfort you may be feeling. Always use a barrier between ice and your bare skin.
If you feel the need to apply ice more often because of the inflammation or pain, you should see a doctor
Part 2 of 3: reduce inflammation
Step 1. Avoid sitting for long periods of time
Get up once an hour and walk for a minute or two to keep the blood flowing. Sitting for long periods of time can cause blood to stagnate in your feet, causing inflammation. If you have to sit for a long time, use a footrest to improve your circulation to the extremities.
Step 2. Wear compression stockings
Wear high socks to improve blood circulation and relieve inflammation in the feet. These stockings are most effective if you wear them every day, especially if you have to spend a lot of time on your feet. Avoid compression socks, they will tighten above the ankle and promote inflammation of the foot.
You can buy these kind of stockings at most drugstores
Step 3. Drink between 1.5 and 2 liters of water per day
Water can help your body get rid of excess salt and reduce swelling in the feet. Some adults may need more or less depending on factors such as pregnancy or health problems. However, most people should drink around 1.5 liters of water per day to reduce the risk of inflammation.
- While you can drink soda or coffee every now and then, don't count these drinks in your daily fluid intake. They have a diuretic effect.
- Don't force yourself to drink more if you can't.
Step 4. Exercise regularly
Try to do it for at least half an hour four to five days a week to improve your blood circulation. Even a short walk can increase your heart rate and prevent blood from pooling in the feet. If you have a more sedentary lifestyle, slowly get used to exercising four days a week, starting with quarter-hour sessions a day.
- If you need to be careful because of pregnancy or an injury, ask your doctor for advice on what exercises you can do to relieve inflammation.
- Also, try doing it with a partner, it's a great way to keep up with your new habits.
- Certain yoga poses, such as lying on the floor with your legs raised against the wall, can also help relieve inflammation.
Step 5. Avoid wearing shoes that are too small
Instead, wear ones that fit you well and ensure that the forefoot fits comfortably into the widest part of the shoe. When you wear shoes that are too small, it can cut off the circulation, which will cause you a lot of pain and even injury.
Part 3 of 3: maintain good foot health
Step 1. Wear shoes suitable for sports
Sneakers with a thick sole can make your feet more comfortable when running or jumping during your exercises. You can also buy gel orthotics for extra support. Always wear shoes with good structure and stability if you are going to be active.
Instead, buy them towards the end of the day, as that's when your feet are most swollen. They should fit you well, even if they are a bit wide
Step 2. Lose some weight
Try to maintain a healthy weight for your height by taking care of your diet and playing sports. The extra pounds can put more pressure on the feet and put pressure on the blood vessels, especially if you are active. Even losing just a kilogram or two will help relieve the inflammation in your feet.
Your doctor may be able to advise you on a healthy weight that you should reach
Step 3. Avoid wearing high heels everyday
Instead, choose shoes with heels shorter than 2 inches and try not to wear them all the time. High heels can pinch your feet and they put a lot of pressure on the front of the foot. If you put a lot of weight on a small area like this it will cause inflammation, pain, and you may even displace bones.
If you want to wear high heels, you should favor thick heels instead of stilettos to give you better stability
Step 4. Don't smoke
Smoking affects your heart and makes it harder for your blood to flow. Especially since your feet are so far away from your heart, they can swell and glow easily. Your skin might even start to get thinner. Consider quitting smoking to improve your overall health as well as that of your feet.
Step 5. Massage them
This helps relieve pain and improve blood circulation when you need it. Rub the sole of your foot with a rolling pin to circulate the blood. You can even ask your partner to rub the soles of your feet, which will increase circulation and remove stagnant blood. Use your fingers to massage any areas that appear tense or painful.
Step 6. Take anti-inflammatory drugs to manage minor aches and pains
If your doctor has ruled out other more serious problems, it is generally safe to take non-prescription anti-inflammatory drugs to manage inflammation in the feet. Take 200 to 400 mg of ibuprofen every four to six hours as needed to reduce swelling and discomfort.
Always check with your doctor before taking any medicine. Some medications or disorders could interact with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen
- If the inflammation in the feet does not go away after lifting your feet for two or three days, you should go to the doctor.
- Some serious disorders like kidney and heart disease can cause swelling in the feet, so you shouldn't ignore it if the problem persists.
- Call a doctor right away if you notice pain, redness, or a feeling of warmth in the swollen area or if you have an open sore there.
- Also call the doctor if you are short of breath or if any of your limbs are swollen.
- Protect the swollen area from additional pressure or injury, as it will take a long time to heal.