Pregnancy creates many changes in your body. You might be more concerned with what’s occurring to your belly and breasts. However, your changing hormones affect nearly every bodily system, including your bones, ligaments and tendons. You might notice the difference when you walk.
That’s because pregnancy changes your feet, not only your midsection. You might not see the changes once your belly blocks the view, but you’ll feel the difference. That’s one of many reasons why it makes sense to switch your shoes during pregnancy.
Maintaining Mama’s Safety With the Right Pregnancy Shoes
You might not find it surprising to learn that your feet grow while expecting. Pregnancy does more than make your feet a bit bigger, rendering your old shoes too snug for comfort. It can also impact your gait, your arch height, and even your chances of later developing ongoing problems like plantar fasciitis.
You read that correctly — even the way you walk changes during pregnancy. You might not be mindful of these minute alterations, but they can risk your and your baby’s health. Strolling in unsupportive shoes like flip-flops may increase your risk of falling, especially in inclement weather. You might not suffer much from the fall, but it can harm your unborn child.
In fact, it’s probably better to be barefoot and pregnant than in the wrong shoes — at least within the safety of your home. You’ll enjoy superior comfort, giving your feet all the room to spread that they need without a huge investment in new house slippers. A few cozy pairs of Sherpa socks keep you toasty if you have perpetually cold feet.
Dealing With Foot Changes During Pregnancy — Is It Better to Be Barefoot and Pregnant
If you’re a mom-to-be on a budget, you might balk at buying special pregnancy shoes. However, there’s no need to search for special brands marketed to pregnant women. Any foot coverings that accommodate your increased size will do the trick.
Let’s take a closer look at how your feet change during pregnancy. How can you tell the difference between structural modifications and the swelling many people experience as the day continues? Look for consistency. If your shoes only start feeling tight after 5 p.m., your feet might simply be expanding from the day’s pressure. However, deeper shifts occur if they also pinch your toes at 8 a.m.
Fluctuating hormonal levels cause your body’s ligaments to become more pliable. This shift makes sense — after all, the connective tissue in your hips must expand to accommodate the baby upon delivery.
Your feet contain 26 bones and more than 30 joints, held together by connective tissues. As your hormones shift, they spread.
Furthermore, weight gain during pregnancy contributes to foot growth. After all, you put more pressure on your paws as your baby gets closer to delivery.
Can you prevent permanent foot changes? If you’re concerned about fitting back into your stilettos after delivery, you can improve your chances by wearing the right pregnancy shoes. While it may feel more comfortable to be barefoot and pregnant, doing so 24/7 could mean needing a new wardrobe even after giving birth.
The Best Shoes for Pregnancy
What are the best shoes for pregnancy? When shopping for new pregnancy shoes, look for pairs with the following features.
1. No or Low Heel
Even if you formerly lived in heels, you should resign to appearing a bit shorter for the duration of your pregnancy. Tall, skinny heels increase the chances that you’ll fall. If you must add height, look for short, chunky heels that offer plenty of support and no wiggle-wobbles.
2. Plenty of Cushioning
Remember that pregnancy weight gain? It puts extra pressure on your bottom paws. Therefore, the more cushioning your new pregnancy shoes provide, the better.
You might also consider an additional pair of supportive insoles. You can find displays that help you select the right level of comfort for your lifestyle and foot configuration.
3. Arch Support
Remember, your arches also change during pregnancy. Even if you formerly had feet that made ballerinas envious, you could find yourself rather flat-footed by the time you give birth.
You can’t prevent every shift, but you can go far by finding a pair that supports your arches. It’s best to visit a professional for a fitting.
4. Supportive Sides
The sides of your shoes need to be like Baby Bear’s chair. They shouldn’t be too unyielding but offer sufficient support to prevent the worst foot spread.
Materials like leather and artificial blends like polyester and rayon offer considerable support. There’s enough give to account for swelling while keeping you from feeling wobbly. Your best bet is to shop at the end of the day when your feet are at their widest point.
5. Sturdy Soles
You need to keep your balance on slick surfaces. Look for shoes with sturdy rubber soles with the right tread to keep you from slipping and sliding away when things get rainy or icy.
6. Slide-On Potential
As your belly increases in size, you won’t be able to bend over and tie your laces as comfortably. The best shoes for pregnancy are those you can slip on — but leave the flip-flops for after giving birth.
7. Overall Style and Comfort
Finally, pregnancy doesn’t need to mean resigning yourself to ugly shoes. You can find stylish numbers that fit. If you suffer severe swelling, consider opting for wide-width versions — you can find the same look in a more forgiving size.
Why It Makes Sense to Switch Your Shoes During Pregnancy
Your body undergoes many changes during pregnancy. Your feet are no exception.
It only makes sense to switch your shoes during pregnancy. Cater to your comfort until you give birth.