You’re enjoying your day, when all of a sudden you feel it. Your legs become achy and uncomfortable and you’re once again reminded that your varicose veins are not just unattractive, they also can be painful — leading you to skip activities you love and miss out on fun times.
But varicose veins shouldn’t stop you from living life to its fullest; luckily, there are ways to ease your discomfort. Follow these tips for varicose vein pain relief.
Leg Stretches and Exercise
While exercise might not be the first thing that comes to mind to alleviate leg pain, it most certainly helps. Getting some movement in your calf muscles for short periods of time throughout the day helps stimulate blood flow. Flex your feet regularly, and be sure to change positions every 30 minutes. If you stand during most of your workday, be sure to take sitting breaks, and if you sit most of your day, be sure to get up and walk around periodically. Move as much as possible.
Elevate Your Legs
Elevating your legs above your heart can provide immediate varicose vein pain relief. This gets the blood flowing in your lower body back to your heart, and helps the venous valves function more efficiently. Elevating your legs for 15-minute increments also can reduce the swelling. There are many simple ways to do this: Prop them up with three or four pillows, put them up on the table, or lie on the floor with your legs against the wall.
Soaking your legs in cold water can relieve the feeling of heaviness in the legs. The cool temperature causes your blood vessels to shrink, alleviating the pain. Additionally, avoid hot showers and hot tubs, as the heat can actually heighten the throbbing and leg cramps.
As with most conditions, staying hydrated does wonders for your body. Proper hydration supports healthy blood circulation, which will reduce the amount and frequency of pain from varicose veins.
Be Mindful of What You Wear
High heels can trigger varicose vein pain, according to the Mayo Clinic, so it’s recommended to avoid wearing them. Opt for low-heeled shoes instead, as they work the calf muscles, which helps your veins. Tight clothing can restrict blood flow, which results in pain, particularly in your waist and legs.
While you can’t prevent varicose veins, taking these measures can provide pain relief and help slow the progression of developing new varicose veins. These methods are cost-effective and simple to do in the comfort of your own home. Best of all, they should provide relief within minutes, and get you back to your day.