Sore legs. Swollen legs. Painful, heavy legs. Sound familiar? They’re all symptoms of poor vein health. The only way to completely get rid of these symptoms is to treat the source — venous insufficiency. Specialists, like the vascular physicians in Orlando at Central Florida Vein & Vascular Center, can assess the state of your veins and create a treatment plan that works for you. But until you schedule your consultation — and treatment — there are lifestyle changes you can make to keep your veins in top shape.
What Causes Bad Vein Health?
Your veins have valves that are responsible for circulating blood throughout your body. While most veins handle this well, the valves in your legs have an additional obstacle to face: they must push blood upward against gravity. Over time and for most women during pregnancy, the vein valves in your legs can become weakened or damaged. Blood then pools in the vein, and a varicose vein forms.
Varicose veins can come with a variety of annoying symptoms, such as pain, itchiness, restlessness, or heaviness in the legs. Veins can be dark, bulging, and visible under the skin. Over time, they can break down further and form an ulcer, or a blood clot can form and travel from the leg to another part of the body. Vein problems are serious, which is why it’s important to do what you can to promote circulation. Luckily, these lifestyle changes are easy to make! Let’s look at a few.
Move Around Often
We sit a lot more than we realize. If you have a desk job, you probably spend 8 hours of your day sitting in a chair. You likely sit on your commute to and from work, and when you get home, you might want to relax by sitting to enjoy your favorite show. And if you have bad vein health, you might want nothing more than to sit down, pull on some compression stockings, elevate your legs, and relax. The latter may offer symptomatic relief, but it’s always best to address what’s causing the problem!
When your body is in one place for too long, it struggles even more than usual to move blood upward through the leg. The solution is easy: move. Take breaks during your workday to walk to the water cooler; go walk to a co-worker instead of messaging them. Try to get these short walks in every 30 minutes to promote circulation. Be careful of your posture while sitting as well — we don’t always realize how long we’re sitting in the exact same position!
If you work a job where you stand all day, this also applies. Take some time to walk around, or do some heel raises while you stand. This will activate your calf muscle pump to drive vein flow. Your legs will appreciate it!
Trampolines aren’t just for kids. If it’s been years since you’ve had fun jumping around, it may be time to get back into it. This childhood favorite activity has proven beneficial for your overall health and especially good for veins! The act of jumping on a trampoline can promote circulation, which reduces the amount of blood pooling in the vein. And if you’re looking to lose weight or strengthen your knees and ankles, rebounding could be just the thing you need.
How much can you incorporate into your schedule? You don’t need to set aside a lot of time. Just spending five minutes on a trampoline, three times a day, can be beneficial for your veins. If you want to exercise but hate running, put rebounding in your exercise routine as a substitute! You can get similar benefits as running in under 20 minutes.
Enroll in a Yoga Class
High-impact exercise isn’t for everyone, and this is especially true if you have bad joints. The ease and accessibility of yoga makes it a perfect choice to build strength and flexibility. Many of the poses are good for your vein health, too! Some poses compress and decompress the veins, while others use gravity to promote circulation.
Don’t have time to jump into a yoga class? There are still easy poses you can do at home to help your legs. Here’s an easy one: while on the floor, lie on your back near a wall. Now, place your legs so that they’re resting up against the wall. Relax and breathe! This helps to drain the blood back up through your leg. It’s relaxing after a long day at work, especially if you’ve spent the entire day in a chair and the deep breathing, a mainstay of yoga, actually helps the venous blood flow better in your veins.
When Lifestyle Changes Aren’t Enough
Varicose veins are common. Even when we do our best to take care of our veins, we may still find ourselves with some form of venous insufficiency, but there’s no need to worry — modern vein care is easier than you think! At Central Florida Vein & Vascular Center, we offer minimally invasive treatments that let patients get back up on their feet right after treatment. These procedures treat the root cause of venous insufficiency, not just the symptoms, so that you can enjoy your life without painful legs holding you back.
If you have concerns about your overall vein health, schedule a consultation with the best vascular physicians in Orlando at Central Florida Vein & Vascular Center. We’ll evaluate your current vein health and discuss what sort of treatment will be best for you. You can schedule a consultation with a specialist by calling 407-545-3385 or 352-658-5547.