Swollen Legs & Ankles Remedies: Swelling In Hands & Feet Causes

Question: I’m having pain in my bones and swelling in feet and palms. Pain is under the feet which go away after walking.

Answer: What is your age? Is there any family history of cardiac, kidney or lung disorders?

Swelling in palms and feet may be due to various reasons. The medical word used for swelling is called edema. In many cases the cause of edema remains undermined, such cases are termed as idiopathic edema. Idiopathic edema is not dangerous most of the time. A woman may complain of swelling in extremities during or before her periods.

This type of swelling in palms and legs gradually reduces once the periods are over.

Injury, medications, blockage in lymphatic drainage etc can precipitate swelling. Your hands and feet may become swollen because of buildup of excess fluid in the body. It is often due to retention of sodium in the body. If the swelling is in excess, the skin may get stretched and there may be associated itching and burning. Below are given possible causes of swollen feet and palms.

What Causes Swelling In Hands And Feet?

As mentioned above one of the reasons for swelling in feet and palms is idiopathic edema.

The cause remains unknown. Swelling often comes and goes on its own. Usually aside from the discomfort the condition is harmless. However, when it persists for long duration, patient should always seek medical advice.

  • Swelling in hands and feet sometimes may indicate something serious in the body. Edema in extremities can be a symptom of heart ailment or improper kidney and liver function. There is excess accumulation of fluid due to sodium retention in such conditions. Therefore, swelling in extremities should never be neglected. Person should always consult his doctor even if there is mild edema in palms and legs.
  • Traumatic injury can cause swollen hands and legs. This is associated with pain on any attempt to walk or put pressure on the foot, localized redness with evident history of an injury/trauma.
  • Arthritis, a condition resulting in inflamed joints also causes localized pain and swelling in ankle and wrist joint. In most cases fingers are also involved. Patient is unable to fold his fingers due to arthritis.
  • Varicosity with deep venous thrombosis may have one of its symptoms as swelling in ankle joint. Pain in legs may be a complementary symptom.
  • Thyroid disorder often causes swelling in legs and hands. However, absence of pitting edema is one of the most characteristic features of thyroid disorder. This means if you press your thumb on the swollen leg, there is no pit or dimpling formation.
  • Certain medications can also cause swelling and pain in legs and hands.  These medicines may retain salts in the body.

Natural Remedies For Swollen Legs And Ankles

Treatment of swollen feet and hands depends on the underlying cause. The simplest home treatment to reduce swelling is R.I.C.E. (rest, ice, compression, and elevation).

  • Give rest to your foot as much as possible. Especially if there is history of trauma, avoid walking for too long. Always keep your limbs elevated (above the level of your heart) while sitting and lying down to avoid leg and ankle swelling.
  • Don’t sit or stand for prolonged periods of time, take breaks and walk for short span of time to reduce leg swellings. Use cold compression to reduce swelling. However, compresses should not exceed fifteen minutes at one time. Restrict your salt consumption, especially if the underlying cause is some type of liver, kidney or heart dysfunction.
  • Barley is considered to be a natural diuretic. Boil 3 to 4 teaspoon of barley in one liter of water. Strain the liquid and drink one glass of this water two to three times in a day. It flushes out accumulated fluid through urine. Watercress and many other water containing vegetables and fruits such as pumpkin, watermelon, ridge gourd etc help to flush out excess of fluid from the body thus reducing swelling in legs and hands.
  • Avoid eating processed foods, fried foods, fish, meat etc.
  • Regular mild exercise such as walking will help to regulate blood circulation and reduce
  • Bryonia 30 every 2 hours will diminish the edema considerably and rapidly.


  1. opeyemi said:

    I have once been on a cast, last two months my leg started swelling, it started like an allergy on the right leg with slight inflammation like I was stung by an insect, I have gone for the creatine, kinase and cholesterol test and all is well. What is happening to my leg?

    November 4, 2009
  2. Salina said:

    Did you have the inflammation immediately after you removed the cast? Do you have any pain?
    There is a possibility that the fracture, for which you applied the cast, has not healed properly or that you removed the cast too early before the healing could take place. This may probably be the cause of the inflammation and edema. You can confirm it simply by taking an X-ray of your right leg.
    Do you have anyone suffering from diabetes in your family, (your parents or your siblings)? Did you get your blood sugar checked?
    Diabetes has a tendency to delay healing process. Normally following any fracture, a cast is ideally applied for a period of minimum 6 weeks, which varies depending upon the age, constitution of the individual and other considerations. Fractures in patients suffering from diabetes will take longer to heal.
    Do you like in a tropical country? What you have typically described is an example of elephantiasis, a symptom of Filariasis, which involves edema and thickening of the underlying skin tissue, without pain.
    These are just a few suggestions based on what you have mentioned. Please share your personal details like your occupation, country, age, etc and specific local and systemic symptoms for me to be able to give you a more appropriate probable diagnosis.

    November 12, 2009
  3. TVS said:

    My mother 84 years old has her left leg and foot swollen. She has visited several physicians and also under medication. Her condition has become worse.
    Please suggest whom she must be referred to as she also is diabetic and suffers from hypertension.

    January 25, 2010
  4. Kristine said:

    My mom has her left foot swollen and she is 84. It is red too. She is on a low sodium diet and blood pressure medication. She has a remote control chair and I told her to keep her feet up as much as possible since she does not walk much. (Only with a walker) She is not doing it though, and I cannot be there all the time either.

    September 16, 2012
    • PUP said:

      Yes you are right. If she keeps her legs elevated while sitting or while sleeping, the swelling will decrease. Some anti-hypertensive medicines are known to cause edema in feet. Ask your doctor regarding the medicine and if it the cause, he will change the medication. Besides also correct her anemia if present by supplementation and iron rich food.

      September 17, 2012

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