Varicose Vein Prevention
Because some of the causes of varicose veins are unknown, prevention is still debated in the medical community. However, doctors do agree that while there isn’t a way to completely prevent varicose veins, there are several things you can do to decrease your chances of developing them.
Because blood pooling and creating pressure on veins is one known cause of varicose veins, it helps to elevate extremities that are prone to varicose veins when relaxing. Prop your legs up on pillows on in a recliner above the level of your heart. This will help blood drain out of your legs more efficiently, preventing pooling.
Maintaining good health is an important part of preventing varicose veins. Being overweight puts excess pressure on your legs, which increases the chances that blood is being allowed to pool there. Maintaining a healthful weight also maintains a healthful amount of pressure on your legs. Exercise itself might also help prevent varicose veins. Exercises that work the calf muscles are the most beneficial. Try bicycling, walking or jogging, and swimming. These aerobic exercises keep the blood in your legs circulating, which dramatically reduces pressure in your veins.
Extended Sitting or Standing
It is essential to avoid extended sitting or standing whenever possible in order to prevent varicose veins. Extended sitting or standing allows blood to pool in the veins, causing too much pressure. If you must sit for long periods of time, such as during a long car or airplane trip, wear compression hose or stockings, which discourage blood pooling and swelling in your legs. You should also do simple exercises to make sure blood circulates in your legs while sitting. One effective exercise is to flex your ankles up and down, simulating walking. Do these exercises regularly during extended sitting. Extended standing has the same effect on your legs as extended sitting, except the pressure on your legs is greater. The best thing to do if you must stand for long periods is to walk around a bit, even if it is in place. This will help the blood circulate in your legs. Wearing compression hose or socks might help take some of the pressure off your lower legs as well. If you’ve can’t walk around, stand on your tip-toes for a couple of seconds, then slowly lower yourself to the ground. This exercise further encourages blood circulation in your legs.