Varicose veins during pregnancy: Prevention and Healing

Varicose veins during pregnancy

Varicose veins during pregnancy: Prevention and Healing

Varicose veins in pregnancy

If you are pregnant in your third trimester by now you would already know what varicose veins are.

Many women first develop varicose veins during pregnancy because of the pressure of the growing bump on your pelvis and legs. Varicose veins are bulging swollen blue veins that appear just under the surface of the skin. Varicose veins in pregnancy are very common – thought to happen to about 25-33% of the women. Luckily, most of the women are relieved of this problem after delivering the baby.

While it is likely to develop varicose veins anywhere in the body, the legs are the most affected by it. Piles are the varicose vein in the rectal area and they appear during the delivery of the baby. If you have varicose veins in the area between the vagina and the perineum, then the doctor is going to keep a close watch on that area to keep the varicose veins from worsening.

How do you identify varicose veins?

You likely have varicose veins if you have:

  • Swollen feet and ankles
  • Muscle cramps
  • Heavy and aching legs
  • Itching and discomfort all over the vein

Unfortunately, there is no way to avoid varicose veins during pregnancy, you can definitely take some steps to ease the discomfort:

  • Don’t sit or stand for too long. Every now and then, move from your position and take a walk.
  • When you sleep, sleep on the left side. Put your feet on a pillow and wedge another pillow behind your back.
  • If you have to sit for a long day, perhaps when you are at work, then don’t cross your legs. Instead prop them up on a stool or a box.
  • Maintain a healthy diet throughout your pregnancy to control your weight and weight gain.
  • Try wearing tights or stockings to control the varicose veins to stop blood from pooling in your legs. This may not necessarily prevent varicose veins but it can definitely make you more comfortable.

Causes of varicose veins in pregnancy:

Like you already would have known by now, the weight gain in pregnant women is primarily the cause of varicose veins in pregnancy. There are other causes too, like :

  • Standing on your feet for a long period of time.
  • Family history
  • Hormonal imbalance

Prevention and healing of varicose veins during pregnancy:

There are many ways to try preventing varicose veins during pregnancy. Here are some of them:

  • Keeping your weight under control - Remember this during all points when you feel like having that extra helping of cake. If you’re feeling full, stop. We all have listened to the “you are eating for two” spiel, but remember, contrary to popular belief, chubby is not always healthy. Keeping your weight under control helps a lot in preventing varicose veins.
  • Sleeping on your left side - It has been proven that sleeping on your left side helps because it puts less pressure on your main muscles.
  • Relax - like really! It works to have a calm temperament at all times. The stress and the strain also has an adverse effect physically during pregnancy. Try listening to some calming music or go for a walk when feeling too under the heat.