Contrary to popular belief, varicose veins can be treated without undergoing surgeries. It is a highly common medical condition that people fall victim to. More than 10 million people in India alone are diagnosed with varicose veins every year.
Medical professionals all over the world swear by a few varicose veins prevention methods that not only help in preventing them in the first place but also stop them from coming back after getting treated by the doctor. Most of them are at-home remedies for finding relief from the pain and discomfort caused by varicose veins.
Let us walk through some of the most revered methods for the prevention of varicose veins below.
HOW TO PREVENT VARICOSE VEINS?
The methods suggested here do not require any sort of medical assistance and can be easily incorporated into the day-to-day schedule of an individual. Varicose veins can be prevented in most non-severe cases by:
- EXERCISE REGULARLY
Aged people are often worried about joint and muscle aches as well as tiredness due to vigorous exercise. The good news is that varicose veins prevention exercises are never high intensity or high impact. Walking for 10 to 15 minutes per day or participating in light sports activities like jogging, bicycling, or swimming are proven to be highly beneficial in preventing varicose veins from occurring again. These activities help in not only strengthen the muscles in the legs but also helps in improving blood circulation.
Also frequently moving the legs, stretching them out every hour, and keeping them elevated while resting is highly recommended as it ensures proper blood circulation.
- KEEP MOVING
Speaking of movement, it is very important to avoid sitting or standing in one position for too long. In case it’s unavoidable, make sure to shift the weight of the body from one leg to another from time to time. A low-height stool can also be used to put either of the feet on them while standing for a long time. The legs must move enough to send blood to the heart every hour to prevent the blood from getting pooled up in the legs. Anyone at risk of recurrence of varicose veins should also avoid sitting with legs crossed.
- WEAR COMPRESSION STOCKINGS
Compression stockings slow down the progress of varicose veins and help in relieving the swelling and pain associated with it. These elastic stockings do not allow the blood to flow backward. Therefore it is advisable to wear them throughout the day except at bedtime. Compression stockings are only effective when the person wearing them is standing. They aid in preventing the condition from getting worse.
- MAINTAIN A HEALTHY AND BALANCED DIET
Excessive body fat, especially in the mid-section can lead to the exertion of a lot of pressure on the thigh and the groin, in turn, the walls and the valves of the veins in the legs and the groin get weakened. One must follow a personalized varicose veins prevention diet designed according to what works for that particular individual. A diet low in salt and high in fiber is recommended for people who are at risk of recurrence of varicose veins. Constipation is closely related to varicose veins. Eating fibers can help reduce constipation and thereby help in the treatment of the medical condition. Consumption of too much salt can lead to retention of water and swelling of blood vessels.
The following foods should be preferably eaten to prevent varicose veins up to some extent:
- Whole grains, for example, buckwheat
- Dark-colored berries containing anthocyanins and proanthocyanidins. These pigments tone and strengthen the walls of veins
- Pineapples are rich in bromelain that helps to prevent blood clotting
- Cayenne pepper
FOODS THAT SHOULD BE AVOIDED: red meat, refined carbohydrates, fried foods, animal protein, cheese, and ice cream.
- PRACTICE YOGA
Stretching and relaxing techniques of Yoga are immensely helpful in the prevention of varicose veins. Deep breathing exercises help alleviate discomfort by letting in more oxygen into the bloodstream. Deep breathing helps in drawing blood from the legs. This in turn sends in fresh blood to the legs and aids in pain relief. Breathing exercises should be done for at least 10 minutes every day.
WHAT ARE THE SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF VARICOSE VEINS?
The common signs and symptoms of varicose veins are listed below:
- Noticeable dark blue, rope-like blood vessels in the legs and feet indicate superficial varicose veins
- Aches or tenderness along the course of the veins
- Tiredness and heaviness in legs but without apparent blue veins indicate deep varicose veins
- Swelling in the legs
- Skin darkening of the skin and pigmentation.
- Numbness in the legs
- Itching along with rashes in the legs
- Burning sensations
- Cramping of legs at night
- Intolerance to exercise
- Discolored, peeling skin with skin ulcers
- Constant pain is a sign of severe varicose veins.
- Pain-related to larger varicose veins is in most cases, a dull ache that gets worse after prolonged standing.
- Pain may get worse with the menstrual cycle, pregnancy, and in response to extrinsic hormonal therapy (e.g birth control pills)
The varicose vein condition is defined as a dilation of one or more veins accompanied by elongation and thickening of the walls of the blood vessels. They can occur in any part of the but in the majority of the cases, varicose veins are found to affect legs.
According to reports by researchers, varicose veins can return even after a doctor’s treatment. Therefore certain measures like maintaining a proper diet and exercising regularly among others can help in the prevention of recurrence of varicose veins.