Many moms spend a lot of time running around and constantly on their feet – good exercise, but what about the negative effects? Unfortunately, all of this time spent on your feet (plus the stress of motherhood) can contribute to the formation of varicose and spider veins.
Dr. Luis Navarro, Director of The Vein Treatment Center in New York, NY, and one of the most well-respected and established physicians in the country, has 10 easy and effective ways to prevent varicose/spider veins, even during your busy day to day life as a parent.
- GET REGULAR EXERCISE: Any type of exercise that strengthens the “second heart” – the muscles of the calf and foot – is beneficial. Exercise for at least 30 minutes a day, 3 times a week.
- WEAR GRADUATED COMPRESSION STOCKINGS: Compression stockings act like an added layer of muscle, aiding the performance of the “second heart” and venous circulation.
- AVOID PROLONGED PERIODS OF SITTING AND STANDING: Rotate your ankles and feet whenever possible, take brief walks every hour and point and flex your toes to promote leg vein circulation.
- ELEVATE YOUR FEET: Raise your feet 6 to 12 inches above your heart whenever possible to assist circulation. It’s easiest to do then when sleeping.
- EAT A HIGH FIBER DIET: Take steps to avoid constipation, as it puts pressure on the venous system.
- MONITOR HORMONE INTAKE: Birth control pills and hormone replacement therapy can constrict blood vessels and weaken vein valves and vein walls. Address your concerns with your doctor before getting on any sort of medication.
- TAKE VITAMIN E and/or VITAMIN C: Vitamin C and E keep blood vessels strong, which prevents them to stretch and swell, which is the cause of varicose and spider veins. Vitamin E also prevents blood clots.
- STOP SMOKING: Just another reason to put down the cigarette – smoking causes blood vessels to constrict, and can cause high blood pressure. Both cause poor circulation and can result in varicose/spider veins
- AVOID TIGHT FIGHTING PANTS: Don’t wear clothing that is too tight, it will constrict blood flow through the legs, which causes veins to swell.
- MAINTAIN A HEALTHY BMI: If you are at an unhealthy weight, the extra weight may strain your legs and cause veins to form.