Foot swelling due to travel can be prevented by shifting positions on the seat, walking after several hours, avoiding tight-fitting clothing, taking plenty of fluids and avoiding alcohol and sedatives, as stated by Mayo Clinic. Foot swelling due to travel is a common condition, but it is harmless. This occurs due to sitting in one position for a long time, causing blood to accumulate in the veins.
Foot swelling also occurs because the sitting posture while traveling tends to increase pressure on the legs. The fluids in the blood move to the nearby tissues, resulting in swelling. This condition can only last for a short time, so it is not a serious health problem. If the swelling continues for longer than expected, it is necessary to seek medical attention as it could be an indication of a more serious problem. Swelling that is accompanied by pain should be examined by a doctor.
People who have recently had a surgical operation and women using birth control pills should consult a doctor before traveling because they are usually at higher risk of blood clotting. Blood-thinning medication may be prescribed prior to flying, as stated by Mayo Clinic. Some people will need to follow the doctor's advice to prevent the swelling.