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After pregnancy, some women's feet stay bigger

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After pregnancy, some women's feet stay bigger

Pregnancy may increase a woman's foot size, a change that appears to be permanent, according to a new study.

Researchers measured the arch height and foot length of 49 women during their pregnancy and five months after they had given birth. On average, the women's arch height decreased, and in turn, their foot length increased between 2 and 10 millimeters (about 0.1 to 0.4 inches) — during this period.

Overall, about 60 to 70 percent of the women had longer feet and shorter arches after childbirth, the researchers said. Eleven of the women reported changes in their shoe size, the researchers said.

While previous studies have documented changes in foot size during pregnancy, none had looked to see if the changes persisted after delivery. "I heard so many women talking about having to go buy new shoes after pregnancy," said study researcher Neil Segal, an associate professor of orthopaedics and rehabilitation at the University of Iowa. This prompted Segal to look into the issue further.

In an earlier study, Segal surveyed about 110 women at a mall, and asked if their shoe size had ever changed during their adult years. While just 13 percent of women who'd never been pregnant said it had, between 30 to 60 percent of women who had been pregnant at least once said their shoe size had changed.

The change in foot size may be due to the extra weight women carry around during pregnancy, which puts greater stress on the feet, and, thus, may flatten the arch, the researchers said. In addition, pregnant women produce hormones that increase the looseness of the joints and ligaments (tissue that connects bone to bone), possibly making the foot structure more malleable. 

Most of the women involved in the new study who experienced changes in their foot length and arch height were first-time mothers. Women had given birth to two or three children did not experience such significant changes. This result suggests that a woman's first pregnancy may have the greatest impact on foot size, the researchers said. But a larger study will be needed to confirm this, Segal added. (Twenty-nine of the women in the study were first-time moms; 17 were second-time moms, and three were third-time moms.)

Changes in the feet during pregnancy may explain why women are at increased risk for pain or arthritis in their feet, knees, hips and spine than men, Segal said. A flattened foot can strain the ligaments in the foot's sole, causing changes in gait that put extra strain on the knees, Segal said.

Segal plans to do more studies to determine if foot changes during pregnancy do indeed lead to other health problems, such as arthritis. He also plans to investigate whether modifying the footwear of pregnant women  can prevent foot flattening..

The study will be published in the March issue of the  American Journal of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation.

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by on Mar. 2, 2013 at 8:24 PM
Replies (11-20):
mehamil1
by Platinum Member on Mar. 2, 2013 at 8:56 PM

I already had huge feet. I went from a 10 to an 11. God damn that kid!

Jers.
by on Mar. 2, 2013 at 9:00 PM

Ditto!  How long do you try to convince yourself that either your foot would go back down or you could make those shoes fit? lol  It took me a while to give in.


Quoting funny_girl3:

Used to be a 7 1/2, now I wear a 9 wide.  After my first pregnancy I had to throw away a bunch of designer shoes.  I cried.



funny_girl3
by Member on Mar. 2, 2013 at 9:13 PM

I think my son was almot 1 when I got rid of most of them.  I actually didn't throw them away, I gave them to my mom, I swear she likes to rub it in my face that she still wears a 7 1/2.  She also brags that she wore my jeans from high school, my hips spread too and I'll never wear that size again.  I just threw away my last (and favorite) pair of pumps 2 1/2 years ago when I was cleaning house and getting ready for my daughter, so I kept them for more than 8 years after it became impossible for me to wear them.  Did you ever replace yours?  I never did, but I still love to drool over shoes.


Quoting Jers.:

Ditto!  How long do you try to convince yourself that either your foot would go back down or you could make those shoes fit? lol  It took me a while to give in.


Quoting funny_girl3:

Used to be a 7 1/2, now I wear a 9 wide.  After my first pregnancy I had to throw away a bunch of designer shoes.  I cried.





Jers.
by on Mar. 2, 2013 at 9:20 PM
1 mom liked this

I gave mine to friends.  Slowly, but surely I got new ones, but nowhere near the collection I had.  It's a bit harder now with one kid in college and the other on his way in Fall - I can't just drop $600. on shoes as often as I used to.  College kids are expensive lol


Quoting funny_girl3:

I think my son was almot 1 when I got rid of most of them.  I actually didn't throw them away, I gave them to my mom, I swear she likes to rub it in my face that she still wears a 7 1/2.  She also brags that she wore my jeans from high school, my hips spread too and I'll never wear that size again.  I just threw away my last (and favorite) pair of pumps 2 1/2 years ago when I was cleaning house and getting ready for my daughter, so I kept them for more than 8 years after it became impossible for me to wear them.  Did you ever replace yours?  I never did, but I still love to drool over shoes.


Quoting Jers.:

Ditto!  How long do you try to convince yourself that either your foot would go back down or you could make those shoes fit? lol  It took me a while to give in.


Quoting funny_girl3:

Used to be a 7 1/2, now I wear a 9 wide.  After my first pregnancy I had to throw away a bunch of designer shoes.  I cried.







lga1965
by on Mar. 2, 2013 at 9:28 PM

 Yes!  With my first pregnancy, I went from size 6 and a half all the way to 7 and a half!

And I barely gained any weight during the pregnancy and I could wear my regular clothes about 10 days after I gave birth.

I guess my feet expanded during the pregnancy and never wwent back to my previous size.

stacymomof2
by Ruby Member on Mar. 2, 2013 at 9:55 PM

I used to be an 8, now I wear a 9 or 9.5.  I did have to get rid of all my old shoes.  they just hurt, I couldn't wear them.

Denisethedaring
by Member on Mar. 2, 2013 at 10:03 PM

I've heard this, but it didn't happen to me personally.

LauraKW
by "Dude!" on Mar. 2, 2013 at 10:08 PM
I went up a half size each wih both of my boys.
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mamoore83
by Member on Mar. 2, 2013 at 10:10 PM
My first was from.a 10 to an 11, my second no real changes. I was ready to practice foot binding to keep them from growing haha
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butterflyblue19
by on Mar. 2, 2013 at 10:35 PM

Mine did. I went from a 7.5 to a 9

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