If you've ever been pregnant you know your whole body swells. Many of your shoes are hard to fit into, and continue to be a tight fit even after having your baby.
Now, a study done at the University of Iowa published in the March issue of the American Journal of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation shows that during pregnancy the arch of the foot flattens out, increasing the shoe size.
Dr. Neil Segal, associate professor of orthopaedics and rehabilitation at the University of Iowa, said in a press release, "I had heard women reporting changes in their shoe size with pregnancy, but found nothing about that in medical journals or textbooks."
Well it now can be in the books. Researchers studied the feet of 49 pregnant women and took static and dynamic arch measurements during the first trimester and five months after their babies were born..
For nearly70 percent of the women, their feet became longer and wider. On average, the arch height and rigidity decreased significantly, which caused the foot to lengthen between 2 and 10 mm.
Scientists have stated the arch may flatten because of the extra weight and increased looseness of the joints while the woman is pregnant.
They will now research whether these changes can lead to health problems like arthritis later in life in follow-up studies.
"We know that women, and especially women who have had children, are disproportionately affected by musculoskeletal disorders," Segal told HealthDay.
He added, "It is possible that these foot changes that occur during pregnancy may help explain why, in comparison with men, women are at higher risk for pain or arthritis in their feet, knees, hips, and spines."