Prevention is the best course of action when possible. While much of vein disease is related to things we cannot change (such as gender, age, and family genetics), there are a few tips one can follow to avoid encouraging the process. Dr. Andrew will work with you to highlight simple lifestyle changes to prevent or minimize progression of spider and varicose veins. Many of the tips below focus on reducing the strain on leg veins by reducing vein pressure.
Vein disease, such as varicose veins, may be discouraged with these simple steps:
- Maintain a healthy body weight. Obesity (BMI> 30) increases pressures in veins. Avoiding this added stress will keep vein pressures low.
- Exercise regularly, ideally 30 minutes a day. Activities that exercise your legs, like walking and running, are best to ensure good venous return and reduce leg vein pressures.
- Avoid crossing your legs. Pressure of one leg over the other can increase vein pressures, leading to varicose veins.
- Keep your feet elevated when possible. When sitting, a stool or recliner is helpful. With the legs elevated, the impact of gravity on leg veins is reduced.
- Avoid prolonged periods of standing or sitting. Walking for two minutes, every 20 minutes, will decrease vein pressures in the leg.
- Avoid tight clothing around the waist, groin, or legs. Tight clothing compresses the veins and can increase pressures lower in the leg.
- Avoid wearing high heels. While helping make the leg more attractive, high heels also prevent use of the calf muscle when walking, increasing vein pressures in the legs.
- A healthy diet low in salt is also potentially helpful. Higher salt in your diet increases body water retention, increasing blood volume. This increased volume results in greater leg vein pressures.
While the tips above may seem like a lot, focusing on one item at a time can pay real dividends down the road. Fortunately, when prevention is not possible, there are effective and safe options to treat your veins. If you are interested to learn more, please review the information on this website and schedule an appointment with Dr. Andrew to discuss your options.