Varicose veins are very common in adult women. In fact, about 50% of the female population has varicose veins. Unfortunately, this condition can cause pain and discomfort.
If your varicose veins throb at night and make it difficult to sleep – or if you’re unhappy about their appearance – then pay attention to this article. We’ll tell you how to relieve the symptoms of varicose veins.
What are varicose veins and why do they hurt?
Varicose veins are basically dilated veins that become inflamed and are located very close to the surface of the skin.
They are dark blue or purple in color and, in some cases, can protrude quite a bit from the leg. They may cause cramps, a heavy sensation in the legs, and even severe pain. Some women also experience itching and pain when they scratch their leg.
Varicose veins are triggered by venous insufficiency and poor circulation. When the return of blood to the heart is not good, the fluid remains in certain areas and this causes inflammation or edemas as well as varicose veins.
One significant factor that leads to the development of varicose veins is genetics. If there are cases of varicose veins in your family, it’s likely that you will also suffer from them at some point in your life, especially if your mother or grandmother has this condition.
Tips for reducing or preventing varicose veins
Let’s look at 6 tips to help you prevent painful episodes of varicose veins or reduce symptoms of this condition when you begin to feel cramps or heaviness in your legs:
1. Perform light exercise.
One this is for sure: exercise is an excellent health ally.
If varicose veins run in your family, we recommend that you practice a low-intensity sport such as yoga, swimming or cycling.
Walking can also help. Don’t choose very intense activities because sudden movements or jumps can aggravate the symptoms.
2. Wear comfortable shoes.
While those heals may be cute and make your legs look gorgeous, they can also bring health problems.
When our shoes are too tight, our blood can’t move freely and it’s difficult for it to return to the heart. This is also true for tight socks and pants because they press on our legs.
We recommend that you wear comfortable shoes during most of the day, especially if you’re going to stand for several hours.
If you have to wear heels for work, then you can carry them separately when traveling to work and put them on when you arrive.
3. Elevate your legs.
Once you return home, take the opportunity to put your legs up. This may hurt a little or be a bit uncomfortable at first. You may also feel your calves falling asleep. All of this is normal because your blood is trying to go down.
If you’re sitting on the sofa, put your feet on a bench or table in front of you. If you’re lying down, you can support your heels by putting them on the wall. And when you’re in bed, you can put some cushions or pillows under your legs.
All of these options are good for venous return.
4. Change positions.
Routine work often requires that we sit or stand for many hours. Both positions are bad for the health of your legs and can be one of the causes of the onset of varicose veins.
Because of this, you should change your posture as many times as possible during the day.
For example, if you’re at your desk, you can get up to talk on the phone when you’re at the office or, if you work in a store, take advantage of the less busy hours to sit down a little.
5. Get massages.
You don’t need to go to a masseuse for this. You can do your own massages at home! Be very careful not to exert too much pressure, though.
The massage is simple: gently tap the affected area and around the protruding veins. Repeat this every day for about 15 minutes each time.
To get even better results you can use some essential oils, such as thyme, rosemary or lavender oil, which have properties that stimulate blood circulation.
6. Maintain a balanced diet.
Moderate consumption of fats, carbohydrates, and sugars is vital to make your veins healthier and to avoid becoming overweight, which is not good for your legs.
Furthermore, don’t drink too much alcohol or coffee and try to drink 2 liters of water per day.
Your diet should consist of a good amount of fiber, antioxidants, and potassium. Eating raw fruits and vegetables is ideal for reducing heaviness in your legs and improving their appearance.
Home remedies for varicose veins
In addition to changing some of your daily habits, you can enjoy the benefits of some plants, fruits, and oils to reduce the pain caused by varicose veins:
Calendula improves the tone of your veins and makes them less vulnerable to degeneration. In addition, marigold has anti-inflammatory properties, reduces swelling and repairs damaged tissue.
Massage your legs with marigold cream before going to sleep.
Witch hazel is an astringent that acts on the circulatory system. It deflates and relieves the heaviness caused by varicose veins. You can get witch hazel essential oil in health stores.
You should apply it with gentle massages every night.
This is a perfect fruit for any circulatory problem. This fruit has great vasodilatory properties and strengthens the walls of veins. Blueberries also provide the body with vitamins and bioflavonoids.
Don’t hesitate to eat a handful a day in the middle of the morning or as a dessert.
Cypress is used for any ailment related to the circulatory system and to the inflammation of the veins.
You can use cypress leaves to prepare a tea, which you can drink or apply with a cotton swab on the affected areas of the legs.