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Podiatrist - Clark, NJ
1114 Raritan Road
Clark, NJ 07066

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By Clark Podiatry Center
April 19, 2017
Category: Foot Care
Tags: edema   swollen feet  

Airlines seem to be adding more seats on flights, limiting space and comfort for passengers. This makes it difficult for people to move around, reducing circulation and blood flow. For some, this immobility and pressure change can mean swollen feet. At the end of the flight, feet can swell to the point of not fitting into shoes, and/or causing numbness, unsteadiness, or pain.

To prevent edema (swelling) during long flights, here are a few things you can try:

  • Wear compression socks. This will help to prevent swelling in the first place, helping to return fluids and blood flow back to the upper body. Wear loose fitting clothes to stay comfortable. Clothing with super tight areas can constrict blood flow!
  • Ask for an aisle seat so that you can move around without disturbing neighbors who might be sleeping. You’ll also have more room to do some seated exercises.
  • Try to do some exercises while seated: 1. Flex and extend your feet. 2. Make windshield wiper motions with the feet. 3. Make circles with your feet with your ankles.
  • Stand up whenever possible. Walk around the aisles (when the captain permits) and use open spaces near the back to do some stretching.
  • Do not sit with your legs crossed.
  • Hydrate and stay away from salty foods. Dehydration can add to swelling in your feet. Plus, drinking more water can make you have to go to the bathroom more – which means more moving about.
  • If you have children with you, make sure they get to move about as well. Take them on a walk around the plane to explore and get to know some of the flight attendants.

We hope these tips can help you have a more enjoyable flight. Edema in the feet is not only uncomfortable, but painful for some as well. Most people do not have serious issues with edema during flights. Some will experience swelling, but it will subside as they land and pressure equalizes.

Those who have diabetes or may get blood clots need to be more vigilant about getting circulation during flights since they are at higher risk of edema. Have you experienced this before? Worried about edema on a future plane ride?

Make an appointment today at Clark Podiatry Center. Our board-certified podiatrist, Dr. Brandon Macy will assess your feet and ankles to keep you walking. We are located in Clark, NJ and serve patients in all the surrounding Union County towns! 

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Podiatrist - Clark, Dr. Brandon Macy, 1114 Raritan Road, Clark NJ, 07066 732-382-3470