Varicose veins are one of the common problems in pregnancy, they are caused by
- Increased blood volume in circulation during pregnancy
- Decreased blood circulation speed from legs
- Hormonal changes in the veins like enlarged veins by progestin
- Pressure to peripherial veins that is caused by growing uterus
- Constipation; which causes another type of varicose vein hemorrhoids
Varicose veins are swollen, blue or purple veins which are found near the surface of your skin.
You may take some precautions to prevent varicose veins;
- Don’t stand or sit motionless for long period: Sitting or standing motionless for long periods cause varicose veins, try not to sit in same position long than 30 minutes. If you have a desk job in a office try to walk around for 5 minutes in every 30-45 minutes.
- Sitting position: Crossing your legs obstructs blood circulation so avoid crossing your legs and ankles when sitting.
- Sleep on your left side: Take a pilow to your back to support your body. This will decrease the pressure on your veins. Blood circulation will be easier if you lay on your left side.
- Elevate your legs and feet if possible: Try to do this in every 3 hours to help blood circulation.You can use a pillow or something under your legs to support them when sitting.
- Be careful about your diet: Don’t gain too much weight, this is an another reason of varicose veins in pregnancy. Consult your doctor about the food you should avoid. Drink plenty of water everyday, don’t eat too much salt. Too much salt and fat containing foods are harmful for veins.
- Exercise: 20-30 minutes of exercise may be very helpful against varicose veins. Foot exercises, walking or swimming can be done during pregnancy. Exercise is a good way to regulate blood circulation. Ask to your doctor which exercises are safe for you.
- Avoid constipation: You can eat more fiber containing foods and drink plenty of water to prevent constipation and hemorrhoids.
- Wear support hose: A special support hose is more thight than a normal pantyhose, you can buy one to yourself from a medical store or pharmacy. Support hose stimulates the blood flow by making pressure to your legs but be careful ;the hose must not be so tight which can decrease the circulation.
- Choose comfortable shoes: Wearing completely flat bottom or high heel shoes may cause varicose veins in pregnancy. Choose comfortable shoes which are suitable to your feet.