Varicose veins are “enlarged or swollen veins”, having a rope-like appearance. They are mostly purple or blue in color and are present right beneath the skin. Varicose veins typically are caused due to prolonged standing hours and affect the legs and feet.
On average, 23% of adults are affected by varicose veins in the U.S. About 33 million people affected by varicose veins are between the age of 40 and 80.
Varicose veins are caused when malfunctioning valves in the veins are unable to bring the blood back to your heart effectively as they work against gravity.
Symptoms of varicose veins
For some patients, varicose veins are only a cosmetic concern. There is no evidence of a direct link between the appearance of varicose veins and the discomfort caused due to them. However, varicose veins can become extremely painful.
Painful and discomforting symptoms of varicose veins include-
- A feeling of itchy, heavy and achy legs
- Cramps in the legs
- Feeling of throbbing and/or burning in the legs
- Swelling in the calves and/or around the ankles
- Discomfort, particularly around the area of varicose veins
Also Read: Top 10 ways to prevent varicose veins
Are Varicose Veins painful?
The condition of varicose veins can be very painful and discomforting for the individual. All the symptoms of varicose veins usually become more troubling during warm days and summer season. Blood vessels have the tendency to dilate with high (or rising) temperatures. This can make it even harder for valves to function properly. The symptoms and pain due to varicose veins can also worsen as the day progresses and more blood pools around the ankles. Prolonged or continuous hours of sitting or standing are also the aggravating factors and can cause a lot of pain, swelling and discomfort in the legs. (Also Read: Stages Of Varicose Veins )
How to get relief from varicose vein pain?
Below are the home remedies to relieve varicose veins pain-
Elevate your legs
To get immediate relief from pain and discomfort due to varicose veins, it is suggested to elevate the legs above the heart. To do this, place your feet on a table and stretch your legs up on a wall, or lie down on a bed and then rest your legs on 3 or 4 pillows. Elevating the legs in such a way makes it easier for the blood to flow in the lower body and circulate towards the heart, and venous valves for effective functioning. (Also Read: 8 Foods For Varicose Veins Patients )
Keep your legs elevated for about 15 minutes each time. This can help reduce swelling and ease discomfort and pain.
Move around regularly and Stretch Your Legs
Doing some easy and short exercises a few times a day can help stretch the calf muscles and ease the pain. Flex your feet more frequently all throughout the day. In case you are on a long trip where you have limited legroom, flex your feet and legs more often. If you have to sit or stand in your job, change position at least every 30 minutes and bend knees regularly.
Keep your body properly hydrated and indulge in regular physical movement to support healthy blood circulation. So, drink a lot of water all day and move around as much as you can.
Have a Cold Shower
If you have pain in your legs towards the end of the day, a cold shower can help. Cool temperature causes the blood vessels to shrink down. This alleviates the swelling and the feeling of heaviness, discomfort and leg cramps. Take a cold shower any time of the day to get relief from painful legs.
Avoid spending too much time in a hot tub, steam, sauna or taking hot baths. The heat has a negative effect on the veins and can worsen the throbbing pain with a lot of exposure to such direct heat.
Prevent the pain
Putting on special compression socks can prevent symptoms of varicose veins such as swollen and heavy legs. This can avoid the painful cramps which patients with varicose veins usually feel after a long day or at night.
Wearing compression stockings in the morning before starting the day can be very beneficial. If the blood starts pooling around the ankles (as the day goes by), even compression stocking or socks are not much effective for helping heavy, achy legs.
High heels and tight clothing also can increase your troubles if you have varicose veins. It is so because they put a lot of pressure on different areas of the body, constricting the blood flow. Wear comfortable shoes and clothing to prevent pain.
When do you need to visit a doctor?
If the varicose veins are causing pain and discomfort regularly, it is time to visit your doctor. If left untreated, varicose veins get worse over time. So, treating the underlying condition for a permanent solution is a more effective remedy to the pain rather than a temporary fix of the symptoms. Get in touch with Pristyn Care for a pain-free, minimally invasive and permanent cure for varicose veins.