Q: Is it safe to wear high heels now that I'm pregnant?
A: We all love a fabulous pair of stilettos, but you may be better off shelving them as you get further along in your pregnancy. Wearing heels is no big deal during your first trimester, but as your pregnancy progresses, you'll probably find that pounding the pavement in your favorite pumps will start to feel uncomfortable. In the second trimester, your body ramps up production of the hormone relaxin, which loosens your ligaments so your baby can pass through your pelvis more easily. However, this loosening can also cause your pelvic, hip, and back joints to shift uncomfortably. Donning high heels disrupts your body's alignment to begin with, but wearing them when your joints are already shifty will likely result in extra back and hip pain. This may not happen the minute you slip them on, but if you wear heels every day for a week, by Thursday or Friday you could be pretty miserable.
In the third trimester when your belly is at its biggest, safety comes into play, too. At this point, your center of gravity will be so off kilter that you may find it increasingly difficult to balance in high heels (not to mention that squeezing your swollen feet into them will be pure agony). We suggest you forgo fashion in favor of not falling down. Instead, use your pregnancy as an excuse to go shoe shopping. Pack away all your 3-inchers and stock up on cute ballet flats or kitten heels (no higher than an inch). And keep in mind while you shop that your feet may expand by as much as a half to a whole size by the end of your pregnancy, so go for styles that have some extra room to grow into.