August Monthly Resources

Here are some tips and information on managing swelling.

Disclaimer: You should consult your physician before you start any of these exercises or any other exercise.

Some Thoughts on How to Handle Edema

There are many reasons why your body may swell. If you sit or stand for too long, summer heat can cause swelling in your legs and arms. Overuse and injuries can cause swelling of body parts. Sometimes, swelling can be a sign that there is an underlying medical condition.

Swelling can occur when your body fluids accumulate in one area. This is called edema. Edema can occur anywhere on your body, including your feet, legs and ankles. Edema can occur in one area or multiple body parts simultaneously.

The cause of edema will determine the treatment. You can ask your doctor if the cause of the swelling is a drug.

Seek medical attention immediately if you have sudden swelling of one or more limbs or minor swelling that is getting worse over time. Singhal says that early treatment of many types can help reduce swelling in the long-term.

5 Tips to Living with Edema

  1. Don’t wear tight clothing. Compression garments may be recommended by your doctor. These garments are intended to be tight.
  2. Prop up swollen legs. If you feel edema in your legs, raise your feet when you are sitting or lying down. If you can, keep them at the same level as your heart.
  3. Move slowly. It can be helpful to move the affected area of your body that is swelling. Talk to your physical therapist about safe exercises.
  4. Limit salt in your diet. Salt can cause fluid retention. For sodium content, check food labels.
  5. Follow the instructions. Take the prescribed medication for edema as directed by your doctor.

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