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Swollen feet is a common temporary occurrence and it's usually not a cause for concern. However, it may be uncomfortable and bothersome and can interfere with your daily activities.
Swollen feet or ankles can occur due to various factors, such as wearing ill-fitting shoes, staying on your feet for too long, pregnancy, minor injury, edema, medications and certain medical conditions like kidney disease, heart disease, liver disease and lymphedema   .
Swollen feet can be treated with certain home remedies that may help reduce the swelling more quickly and provide you a feeling of comfort. However, if your feet remains swollen for quite a long time or are accompanied by other symptoms, it could be a sign of a medical condition, which requires immediate medical attention.
Let's have a look at some of the home remedies for swollen feet.
1. Soak in Epsom salt bath
Epsom salt (magnesium sulfate) may help reduce swelling and inflammation of the feet. It works by drawing out toxins and provides relaxation, thereby lowering the swelling in your feet .
- Soak your feet in cold water for 15-20 minutes.
2. Elevate your feet
Elevate your legs on a pillow to help lower swelling and relax your feet. If you are pregnant, try elevating your feet several times a day to help decrease swelling. Try to avoid standing on your feet for long periods to reduce swelling.
- Try elevating your legs above the level of your heart for 20 minutes.
3. Wear compression socks
Compression socks are specially designed, snug-fitting, stretchy socks that gently squeeze your legs. They are worn for comfort, to do better in sports and to help prevent serious medical conditions. Compression socks improve blood circulation, lower pain and swelling in your legs, ankle and feet .
- Wear lightweight compression socks that measure between 2-15 mm or 15-20 mm of mercury.
4. Drink plenty of water
Drinking plenty of water throughout the day will help reduce swollen feet because drinking water will stimulate urination. It will help reduce water retention in your feet, thereby decreasing swelling in your feet.
5. Use grapefruit essential oil
Grapefruit essential oil is another home remedy that may help decrease swelling. It possesses antioxidant properties that may help lower swelling and pain in the feet. It also contains anti-inflammatory properties that may help reduce swelling in the feet during pregnancy .
- Add few drops of grapefruit essential oil in a bucket full of lukewarm water and soak your feet.
6. Coriander seeds
Coriander seeds are considered an excellent diuretic that can help get rid of the excess fluid accumulated in your feet .
- Add 2-3 tsp of coriander seeds to a cup of water and boil it.
- Strain the solution and allow it to cool. Drink the water twice a day.
7. Baking soda
Baking soda possesses anti-inflammatory properties which may help reduce swelling in your feet. It helps absorb the excess water that has accumulated in your feet and improves blood flow in the area.
- Mix 2 tsp of baking soda with little amount of water to make it into a thick paste.
- Apply it on your swollen feet and keep it for 10-15 minutes.
- Rinse your feet with water.
8. Apply ice pack
Applying ice pack on the swollen feet is one of the most effective home remedies. It will improve the blood circulation and help reduce swelling and pain in the feet.
- Place the ice pack on the swollen area for 10-12 minutes.
Cucumber can help eliminate excess water in the body and can further help reduce swelling. It cleanses the body by removing the waste and toxins out of the body, which may help reduce swollen feet .
- Cut the cucumber into thin slices and place it on your feet. Cover it with a loose bandage.
- Remove the bandage after 20-30 minutes.
10. Eat magnesium-rich foods
A deficiency in magnesium can lead to swollen feet and legs. Eating foods rich in magnesium can help reduce swelling in your feet.
- Consume magnesium-rich foods, such as spinach, dark chocolate, broccoli, cashews, almonds and tofu.
11. Massage your feet
Massaging your feet gently can help reduce swelling in your feet and also promote relaxation. Massage your feet towards your heart with firm strokes and apply gentle pressure to help remove the excess water and reduce swelling.
12. Eat potassium-rich foods
Potassium helps reduce water retention by decreasing sodium levels and increasing urine production. Consume foods rich in potassium, such as sweet potatoes, salmon, bananas and pistachios.
When To See A Doctor
In some cases, swollen feet may accompany with other symptoms. Seek immediate medical attention if you experience the following symptoms along with swollen feet:
- Warmth, redness or inflammation on the feet
- Shortness of breath
- Swelling accompanied by fever
- New foot swelling during a pregnancy
- Chest pain, pressure or tightness
- Swelling of only one limb