One of the times in life when women are most susceptible to developing varicose veins is during pregnancy. In fact, statistics show that approximately 28 percent of women will develop varicose veins as a result of being pregnant.
The reason why pregnant women have a tendency to develop varicose veins is because a growing fetus puts additional pressure on the veins that run through the legs and typically cause the appearance of varicose veins.
Fortunately, there are a lot of things women can do while they're pregnant to avoid developing varicose veins or to avoid aggravating varicose vein problems that are already present. The following are five things pregnant woman can do to both stay healthy throughout their pregnancy and avoid varicose vein problems.
Stay active throughout your pregnancy
Women should stay active during pregnancy regardless of any varicose vein fears. Regular activity throughout pregnancy can help an expecting mother avoid excessive weight gain and prevent pregnancy complications like gestational diabetes.
Exercise during pregnancy helps prevent varicose veins because it improves circulation.
Don't let yourself gain too much weight
The more weight a woman gains while pregnant, the more stress she'll be putting on the veins in her legs. It's important that pregnant women carefully watch their diet and weight while pregnant. A woman with an average weight and body size shouldn't be gaining more than 35 pounds at her heaviest period of pregnancy.
Keep your legs elevated when you're relaxing
Elevating the legs prevents blood from building up in the veins of the legs. During pregnancy, it's a good idea to not only kick your legs back while relaxing, but also schedule some time every day for leaving your legs elevated.
It's easy for pregnant women to maximize the amount of time their legs are elevated by placing a pillow under the legs when lying down on their backs early in pregnancy. Of course, later in pregnancy women should be sleeping on the side and not on their backs to prevent excessive pressure on the vena cava.
Wear supportive pantyhose
Support hose are frequently used by women with varicose veins to support the veins and encourage blood flow. Wearing this type of hose while pregnant is a good idea and can help to prevent varicose veins.
Avoid standing for long periods of time
Standing maximizes the additional pressure a growing fetus and uterus will put on the legs. Therefore, pregnant women should avoid standing for long periods of time to prevent varicose veins from appearing.
If you do have varicose veins appear, contact a clinic like Alaska Vein Care for treatment.