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Simple Home Remedies for Varicose Veins

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Do you see blue or purple veins bulging out of your skin? These spiralling lines can make people conscious of their appearance.

Home Remedies For Varicose Veins

The presence of swollen and prominent veins on the feet and legs is called varicose veins. Varicose veins are primarily dark purple or blue in colour and appear twisted, lumpy or bulging. Varicose veins usually do not cause any serious issues or discomfort. If you suffer from varicose veins and they do not cause any pain or discomfort, you might not require consultation from your doctor.1 Varicose vein is a common problem, chances of which increase with the increase in age, if you are female, do not exercise, have obesity or have a family history of varicose veins. It is also more common in pregnancy.2

In some cases, if the varicose veins, often called as spider veins, become too noticeable, They might cause discomfort and embarrassment to people.3
What Causes Varicose Veins?

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An increased blood pressure in the veins is the primary cause of varicose veins. The mechanism of how a varicose vein is formed is given below:

The valves in the veins become weakened and damaged
Blood gets collected in the veins, exerting pressure on the walls of the vein
Veins become enlarged and swollen, causing varicose3

The valves can become weakened or damaged due to many reasons such as:

Ageing
Hormones
Standing for a longer period
Excessive weight
Wearing restrictive clothing.4

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Symptoms of Varicose Veins:

The primary symptom of varicose veins is the appearance of dark purple- or blue-coloured veins under the skin surface. Other symptoms of the varicose vein are:

Itching around the varicose vein
Pain or soreness in the legs
Swelling and throbbing in the legs, feet and ankles
Brown discolouration or ulceration on the skin
Legs feeling tired, sluggish and heavy after any physical activity
Bulging and twisted veins.4

Main Types of Varicose Veins
1. Saphenous Varicose Veins

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The saphenous veins are in your legs, they become significantly larger and swollen than normal. This makes them clearly visible as they will push the skin and protrude like mini-ropes. They can have some colour or be colourless.

2. Reticular Varicose Veins

These are smaller in size but spread in a network of reddish, greenish or purplish colours. They cover large sections of the body and although they do not stick out as much as saphenous veins, they can be very obvious against your skin.
3. Spider Veins

These are thinner and smaller compared to the previous types and also spread in a web-like fashion. They can be reddish or bluish in colour.

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Adding to the article gently massaging the affected areas can help to keep the blood moving through the veins. A person can use gentle massage oils or moisturizer for optimal effects. It is crucial to avoid pressing directly onto the veins, however, as this may damage fragile tissues.
Dr. M.G. Kartheeka, MBBS, MD

Suggested Home Remedies for Varicose Veins:

If the varicose veins on your body bother you, you can take these steps at home to enhance your blood circulation in the legs and improve varicose veins.
1. Elevation of legs

Elevating your feet above the level of your heart several times a day can help you reduce the symptoms of varicose veins. You can do this by lying down and putting some pillows below your feet.

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For mild-to-moderate varicose veins, leg elevation will help you improve the blood flow back to the heart and reduce the swelling of the varicosed vein.3

2. Physical exercise

You can try any physical exercise that works the muscles in your legs. The muscles of the legs help your veins push the blood back to the heart against the gravitational force. By exercising your leg muscles, you will also prevent new varicose veins from forming.5
3. Weight loss

Being overweight or obese is one of the major risk factors for varicose veins. When you are overweight, veins have difficulty in pushing the blood back to the heart, which might lead to varicose veins in the long run. Losing weight will help the veins in moving the blood back. It will also prevent the formation of newer varicose veins.5
4. Wear compression stockings

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Compression stockings are designed in such a way so that they help to squeeze your legs and improve blood circulation. As the blood circulation improves, it encourages the flow of blood to your heart. In addition, compression stockings relieve the pain, swelling and discomfort associated with varicose veins. Pregnant women who also have varicose veins can use compression stockings for the duration of their pregnancy. But, pregnant women should consult their doctor before using compression stockings.

Compression stockings are available in different colours, sizes, foot styles, pressures and lengths that can be bought from chemists or directly available from manufacturers.6

PharmEasy Recommends – Sorgen Classique (Lycra) Medical Compression Stockings For Varicose Veins
5. Avoid standing or sitting for long periods

If you have a sedentary lifestyle and if your work involves sitting or standing for a long time, you can take small breaks every 30 minutes to stand up and walk around. Walking will allow the muscles of your legs to move the blood back to your heart. You can do this at your home or workplace to improve the blood circulation in your legs.5

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Natural remedies are also effective in relieving varicose veins. Many natural remedies that might help to improve varicose veins are:
6. Ginger

Ginger possesses many health benefits like improving the flow of body fluids and stimulating blood circulation in the body. It also helps in lowering high blood pressure too.7 You can use ginger to get relief from varicose veins.8 You can add fresh ginger to your diet to get rid of varicose veins. You can also make fresh ginger tea to relieve varicose veins.

7. Garlic

You can take garlic to get relief from varicose veins. Garlic can help to improve blood circulation and reduce blood pressure, improving the swelling and blood circulation associated with a varicosed vein.8 You can involve fresh garlic in your diet by adding it to various dishes.
8. Cayenne

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Cayenne pepper prevents the formation of blood clots and helps in breaking down existing blood clots. This improves blood circulation and helps to get relief from varicose veins.8 You can put cayenne pepper in your dishes.

Prolonged sitting and standing usually makes the varicose veins worse and this condition doesn’t usually get cured on its own and usually requires compression stockings, medical and at times surgical management, if severe and painful.
Dr. Ashish Bajaj, M.B.B.S., M.D.

When to Seek Medical Help?

Varicose veins are not dangerous and do not cause any severe health problems. However, if your varicose veins make you uncomfortable about your appearance, you can meet your healthcare provider or doctor for an examination. Also, if you notice these symptoms along with varicose veins, contact your healthcare provider immediately.

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Swelling
Bleeding
Painful and warm to touch
Discolouration.4

Conclusion:

A varicosed vein appears swollen or bulging beneath the skin surface and is blue or purple in colour. If you are suffering from varicose veins, you are not alone. There are many people suffering from varicose veins who do not experience any complications. In most cases, they do not cause any pain. However, some people might find the presence of varicose veins uncomfortable and concerning. If your varicose veins are causing you any discomfort, you can reach out to your healthcare provider and get a diagnosis and treatment. You can even follow simple steps at home like exercising, walking, elevating the legs and wearing compression stockings.

However, if your varicose veins do not improve with home remedies and you feel other symptoms like bleeding, discolouration and pain, you should immediately contact your healthcare provider.

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