Varicose veins don’t always cause problems, but they are usually unsightly, so you may avoid wearing shorts, skirts, or dresses. Although many people with varicose veins have no symptoms, for some, these bulged veins can cause bothersome symptoms like pain, aching, swelling, and skin discoloration. If you currently suffer from issues caused by Upper East Side varicose veins, your first action is to see your primary care physician. In the meantime, the following tips can help prevent your varicose veins from worsening.
Avoid prolonged periods of standing or sitting.
Office workers are at great risk of developing varicose veins due to prolonged hours of sitting or standing. Being in one position for too long makes it harder for blood in your legs to travel against gravity. As a result, pressure in veins increases, which may cause blood to pool around your ankles, feet, and calves. If you work a desk job, take frequent breaks, at least every thirty minutes. Walking around decreases venous pressure and improves blood circulation, preventing the formation of new varicose veins. If your work involves sitting, consider small exercises like bending your knees, stretching your ankles, and peddling your feet.
Make exercise part of your routine.
Your leg muscles help your veins work against gravity to push blood to your heart. Like any other muscle, exercise is necessary to build their strength, allowing them to work effectively. Any exercise that works your leg muscles can help improve blood circulation. Walking is a simple exercise yet the most beneficial one for individuals with varicose veins.
Yoga poses that elevate your feet higher than your heart are also helpful. Such exercises include a shoulder stand, headstand, and legs-up-the-wall pose. Besides improving blood flow, yoga can helps stretch and tone the deepest muscles in your calves, which to a certain degree, help veins work properly.
Wear compression garments
Some compression stockings are available over the counter – these offer the least pressure and are helpful for people with mild varicose veins. If you have severe symptoms, your doctor may recommend graduated compression stockings; these have the strongest compression at the ankle, which gradually decreases up the leg. Wearing compression stockings helps you have fewer night cramps and also reduces swelling. Depending on your symptoms and other factors, your healthcare provider can help you choose the compression stocking that is best for you.
Make healthy lifestyle adjustments.
Certain risk factors for varicose veins, like family history, sex, age, and pregnancy, are beyond your control. As such, it is important to make healthy lifestyle choices to avoid more damage to your veins. Although some risk factors are beyond your influence, there are some that you can avoid or prevent. For example, being overweight is a controllable risk factor; losing extra pounds and keeping healthy can lower your risk of varicose veins and prevent new ones from forming. You also want to eat a healthy diet consisting of healthy fats, complex carbohydrates, and sufficient protein. Avoid salt-rich foods since sodium encourages water retention, which worsens swelling.
If you need treatment for varicose veins, visit your provider at Upper East Side Cardiology.