How Summer Heat Affects Your Varicose Veins
June 11, 2020 • karnold • Varicose Veins
When you suffer from varicose veins summer heat can really be a problem. The effect of heat on veins exacerbates symptoms like throbbing, swelling, and discomfort. Painful leg veins don’t have to put an end to your warm weather activities, though. Here’s how you can alleviate the symptoms and get back to enjoying the things you love.
How the Desert Heat Affects Your Veins
When the weather heats up, your blood vessels dilate in order increase the amount of blood flow to the surface of your skin. It’s a normal cooling mechanism designed to keep your body temperature under control.
Unfortunately, if you have varicose veins, dilation puts additional pressure on veins that are already distended, making it harder for the valves that regulate blood flow to function properly. This, in turn, can cause swelling, bulging, heaviness, and pain — all the negative symptoms associated with varicose veins.
The symptoms may increase as the day wears on, especially if you do a lot of standing or sit for prolonged periods of time.
Tips to Reduce Varicose Leg Pain
Cold water and cold compresses applied to the site of the varicose vein will shrink the blood vessels in your legs, bringing a sense of relief. This is one of the easiest ways to reduce leg pain brought on by hot temperatures.
Over the course of the day, blood has a tendency to pool in the lower extremities, which can put extra pressure on varicose veins. When you elevate your legs for at least 15 minutes, you make it easier for the blood in your lower body to flow back toward the heart, which lets your venous valves function more effectively.
Stretching your calve muscles and flexing your feet can help with circulation. It’s also a good idea to get up every half hour if you have a stationary job or are flying long distance. Both activities keep the blood flow moving.
Tips to Prevent Varicose Leg Pain
Exercise that improves circulation can help prevent varicose vein pain. Walking is a weight bearing exercise that helps to develop the calf muscles, creating support for your veins. Other helpful exercises are bicycling and swimming. Although it isn’t a cardiovascular exercise, yoga has many benefits as well, including several postures that place your legs above your heart.
- Choose Exercises that Encourage Circulation
If you’re wondering how eating right can help alleviate some varicose vein problems, the answer is simple. First off, eating a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and fiber will help you lose weight, which can alleviate symptoms. But there are also specific foods that help you to improve venous function. Foods containing bioflavonoids, like avocados, broccoli, asparagus, cherries, and spinach, can reduce inflammation and strengthen veins. Beetroot juice and ginger are other beneficial anti-inflammatories. In addition to an anti-inflammatory diet, you should cut down on sodium and remember to stay hydrated.
- Choose a Diet that Improves Your Vein Health
Looking for a More Permanent Solution?
Although these tips will help you gain relief from the discomfort of varicose veins, the only way to eliminate unslightly veins is to have one of the minimally invasive surgical procedures now available. Desert Vein Institute offers the latest surgical procedures and laser treatments. Meet our vein specialists in Las Vegas to see how you can achieve lasting relief from the pain and discomfort associated with varicose veins.