Pregnancy can take a huge toll on your body. Between hormonal changes, weight gain and a living being growing inside of you, you’re bound to feel different than usual. What many people don’t know is that your hormonal changes can lead to circulatory changes, causing varicose veins. Varicose veins are characterized by their signature puffy look and, although generally harmless, can sometimes become itchy and uncomfortable. Let’s talk a little bit about how you can prevent and minimize your varicose veins throughout pregnancy.
Switch It Up
One of the biggest factors to consider when preventing varicose veins is to promote healthy circulation and blood flow. Dr. West and his team recommend making sure you switch up your positions throughout the day. If you tend to work at a desk, consider taking periodic walks throughout the day. If you are on your feet most of the day, make sure you sit down periodically or walk around as well. The more you move around, the better your circulation.
Stick to Flats
High heels may be uncomfortable for your pregnant feet in the first place, but if you do still wear them, we suggest wearing a lower heel or completely flat shoes instead. Wearing high heels keep your calf muscles in a contracted position throughout the day. By wearing flat shoes or shoes with small heels to them, you can ensure you’re fostering good circulation and healthy blood flow.
Take a Lap
You may have heard that exercising, especially cardio, is good for your heart. That’s because it promotes your heart working harder to run blood through your body and deliver oxygen throughout your system. Cardiovascular exercise is great for promoting blood circulation as well. You don’t have to commit to anything too intense – consider taking long walks in the morning or evening to get your blood flowing.
Get Some Support
No, we’re not talking about moral support, although that is important as well. We’re talking leg support with maternity support hosiery. These compression stockings put pressure on the legs the stimulate blood flow up the leg and towards the heart. It’s important to make sure that these stockings are tight, but do not cut off your blood circulation. Ask Dr. West for hosiery recommendations.
Skip the Sodium
Eating foods that are high in sodium often makes us feel heavy and bloated. That’s because sodium has properties that make your body retain more water. When the body retains water, the veins swell up to accommodate for the extra fluid in your body. Dr. West and his team recommend minimizing the amount of sodium in your diet to prevent excessive swelling in your veins on a daily basis.
If you’re still interested in getting rid of your varicose veins following your pregnancy, consider one of our minimally-invasive varicose vein treatments. You can learn more about each treatment and more ways to prevent varicose veins during pregnancy when you contact us to schedule your one-on-one consultation with Dr. West.