Here are some tips on how to maintain healthy veins. But first, why is it important to care about how healthy your veins are?
Why Healthy Veins Matter
Veins are vessels that work against gravity to move blood up from the body back to the heart, using valves to keep blood flowing in the right direction. To do this efficiently, they need to be healthy, strong, and flexible. When they’re not, it can result in varicose veins, unsightly and sometimes painful sections of twisted and swollen veins where the blood flows the wrong way. It can also lead to venous insufficiency, when veins don’t work properly and blood pools in the legs. Blood clots can form in the veins and lead to life-threatening conditions like deep vein thrombosis that can lead to a pulmonary embolism.
In short, veins have a critical job to do in your body and are an important component of vascular health, so it’s important to keep them healthy.
How to Maintain Healthy Veins
Be at a healthy weight. Extra weight puts a lot of stress on the body and additional pressure on the veins, making them less able to do their job. Overweight and obesity are associated with varicose veins and DVT, so get that extra weight off or if you’re at your ideal weight, work to maintain it.
Exercise. Not only will regular exercise help with weight control, but exercise helps improve circulation which is good for vessel health.
Stand up. Sitting for long periods of time can lead to blood pooling in the legs. If you sit for long periods at work or at home, get up periodically to walk around and get that blood moving.
Elevate your legs. One to four times a day, place your legs above your heart and keep them there for 10 or 15 minutes. This can reduce swelling and take pressure of the veins in the leg.
Quit smoking. Smoking is bad for all the vessels in the body, as it weakens the blood vessel walls. Smoking increases your risk for varicose veins, blood clots, and DVT.
Treating Varicose Veins
For severe cases of damaged veins, medications, surgery, and other procedures can help. But to treat varicose veins, a simple outpatient procedure using high-tech lasers is all that’s needed. We treat varicose veins and other leg veins at our practice in Danville, CA. If you’re nearby, find out more about what we do here.