Healthy Veins = Happy Legs: 8 Tips To Prevent Varicose Veins
Nurses, teachers, hair stylists, security guards and other professions require a lot of standing and walking. But did you know that sitting for long periods of time can also contribute to the formation of spider and varicose veins?
In honor of National Nurses Week and in recognition of all our associates, whether you’re one of the “standers” or one of the “sitters” at work, here are some tips for healthy legs.
1. Exercise to improve blood flow. Walking, cycling or swimming are great for vein health.
2. When exercising start out slowly. Aim for 30 minutes on most days.
3. Maintain a healthy weight. Extra weight puts extra pressure on your veins.
4. Wear elastic stockings, positioning them so that the top is below the bend in your knee.
These stockings gently squeeze veins so blood can’t pool and flows upward more readily. Follow your doctor’s advice about how and when to wear them. Elastic stockings should fit snugly.
5. When standing, once in a while raise yourself up and down on your toes or rock back and forth on your heels periodically.
6. Elevate your legs above heart level to give the veins a break from fighting gravity, relieve swelling and keep blood from pooling in veins. This is especially helpful after you exercise.
7. Aim to elevate your legs for 15-20 minutes at the end of the day, as well as whenever you’re relaxing. Prop up your legs with cushions or large pillows to raise them above heart level.
8. Take breaks and sit if you’re standing all day. If you sit at work, take breaks by standing. Or at least flex your feet up and down each hour.
How GMC Can Help
Varicose veins, sometimes called spider veins, are enlarged and twisted rope-like veins that appear near the surface of the skin. At gmcimaging.org you can learn more about the prevention, causes and treatments, including VenaCure EVLT. While you’re there, download a coupon for a free consultation for varicose veins, a special offer from Gwinnett Medical Center.