You may be a hard-working hairdresser or dentist – someone on their feet all day, or you may be pregnant or just genetically pre-disposed – whatever the reason, your legs can be severely affected if you suffer from painful varicose veins.
Why are varicose veins so painful?
Varicose veins are enlarged, swollen veins – usually in the legs but sometimes in the feet or elsewhere on the body. They have a distinct appearance – mainly blue or purple and are often bulging and lumpy in appearance. Difficult to disguise, they affect how your legs look but, even worse, they cause a burning, throbbing sensation and muscle cramps at night. Sometimes the skin becomes dry and itchy too.
This painful sensation is caused because the small valves inside the veins have stopped working effectively. In a healthy vein the blood flows smoothly to the heart and the valves prevent blood flow from returning. When the valve weakens the blood flows backwards and the vein gets swollen and enlarged.
The symptoms can be more severe in warm weather and when standing for long periods.
Why do I have problem veins?
You are more likely to have this problem if:
- You have a job which involves standing for long periods
- You are female
- You are older or overweight
- You are pregnant
- You have other family members with varicose veins
The reasons why some people’s vein walls stretch, and the valves weaken is not known, and some people develop this condition for no apparent reason. But because women and especially pregnant women are more likely to have this issue there may be a hormonal link, and, body weight can put an increased pressure on the valves within the veins.
What should I do?
In most cases a visit to you GP isn’t required, but, if your veins become very painful or the skin is irritated or if the aching at night affects your sleep, then it is important to have them checked by a healthcare professional.
Severe cases of varicose veins may be treated on the NHS, but in most cases, when the issue is aesthetic, you’ll most likely have to pay for potential treatments.
The most likely treatments you’ll be recommended are – endothermal ablation, when a heat source is used to seal the vein, sclerotherapy, when foam is used to close the vein and ligation and stripping, which is when the affected vein is completely removed.
Unfortunately, treatments can be expensive and can’t prevent new vein problems appearing so, if the problem is just cosmetic then the following suggestions may ease the symptoms and improve the look of your legs...
Improve your circulation and keep your BMI sub 25 with daily activity to keep the blood pumping through the veins in your legs. A brisk walk or gentle jog is ideal, if you prefer to hit the gym then the stair climber can burn calories and work the legs effectively.
Raise your legs
Take a break during the day and try and raise your legs, this will help the blood drain more effectively. Perhaps there is a spare chair in the staffroom for raising your feet or a cushion placed on a coffee table will create a good height.
Try some natural therapies
Circulation Maxx https://www.tower-health.co.uk/circulation-maxx.html with its gentle electrical pulse helps boost the circulation in the legs and can relieve pain. Sitting with your feet on the Circulation Maxx is a pleasant, relaxing experience.
Ex-veins varicose leg spray https://www.tower-health.co.uk/ex-veins-leg-spray-75ml.html helps with inflammation, evens out redness and can calm the itching caused by varicose veins. This spray is 100% natural with ingredients such as Horse Chestnut, Juniper and Arnica.