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Pregnancy Month by Month Topics..

You are here : home > Pregnancy Month by Month > Second Month of Pregnancy > Varicose Veins during Pregnancy

Varicose Veins during Pregnancy

Many pregnant women experience varicose veins. Read on to find some common concerns of pregnant women about varicose veins and tips for dealing with and preventing varicose veins.

Is it True that Pregnant Women Develop Varicose Veins?

If you are basically susceptible to varicose veins, this condition is likely to arise during pregnancy. This is because of expanded blood volumes, increased pressure on the pelvic veins and the veins in the leg as well as hormone induced elevation of the muscle tissue in the veins.

Varicose veins are swollen veins which tend to bulge near the surface of the skin. Normally blue or purple in colour these veins show up in the legs. However, you can get it in other parts of the body like the vulva also.

Many women develop varicose veins during pregnancy. In case of women who may have had varicose veins prior to pregnancy, the condition may worsen post pregnancy. The growing uterus of a pregnant woman puts pressure on the large vein on the right side of the body which in turn increases the pressure in the leg veins. This causes varicose veins to develop.

Veins are the blood vessels which pass on blood from our extremities to the heart. Hence, the blood in our leg veins is already working against gravity. During pregnancy the amount of blood in our body increases which adds to the existing load on the veins.

During pregnancy the chance of getting varicose veins is greater if you have already had them before. With each successive pregnancy varicose veins worsen. In case if you are overweight, are carrying multiple babies, or standing for a very long time while pregnant the chances of your having varicose veins increases.

What are the Symptoms of Varicose Veins?

It could range from a mild ache and a sensation of heaviness to severe pain in the legs. Faint bluish lines may appear or huge veins start bulging from the ankle to the upper thigh or vulva. The skin appears dry, irritated and swollen.

Varicose veins normally do not cause any significant discomfort. Some women experience pain because of the legs becoming heavy while suffering from this condition. The skin around varicose veins can become itchy or cause a burning sensation. These symptoms normally worsen at the end of the day in case of pregnant women who are on their feet for most part of the day.

Varicose veins are usually harmless in the short term because of which most pregnant women need not seek any formal treatment for this condition. In certain rare cases the women with varicose veins may develop small blood clots near the skin's surface. If this happens the vein may become like a rope and will be hard to feel. The entire area around the vein can become hot, red and painful. In such cases if the pain becomes intense it may be worthwhile to consult a doctor and seek medical advice for reducing pain and discomfort.

How to Minimise the Discomfort caused by Varicose Veins?

Here are a few things you can do to minimise the discomfort caused by varicose veins.

Exercise Regularly- moderate form of brisk walking for around half an hour each day will ensure proper blood circulation in the entire body.

Maintain Right Body Weight – Consult your doctor and find out how you can maintain body weight appropriate for the stage of pregnancy you are in. Excessive body weight, in addition to contributing to a whole lot of related health issues is also responsible for varicose veins in pregnant women.

Keep Legs Elevated - Keep your legs elevated whenever possible. While sitting you can make use of a small side table or stool to rest your legs. Make use of pillows while lying down to keep your legs in an elevated position.

Sleep on the Left Side - By sleeping on the left side you will be able to relieve the vein of the weight of the uterus thereby reducing the pressure on the veins in your feet and legs.

Wear Stockings - Wear stockings which are tight at the ankles and get looser as they go up the leg. This will enable blood to flow back up towards the heart easily. It will also prevent excessive swelling of the feet keep and varicose veins from getting worse.

How do I Prevent Varicose Veins?

It is simple, just take the pressure off your legs. You must avoid the following things.

  • Excessive weight gain and lifting heavy objects
  • Straining during bowel movements
  • Wearing tight clothing (support tights are good)
  • Long periods of standing or sitting
  • Smoking
  • Sitting or standing in same position for a very long time

You must elevate your legs to hip level while sitting and place a pillow under your feet when lying down. See that you get enough exercise and a dose of vitamin c to keep the veins elastic and healthy.

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Shilpa.3 years ago
Yes varicosevein can develop during pregnancy. I had varicoseveins in my pregnancy & i came to know about EVLT treatment by Dr. Abhilash at *****.com It was a splendid treatment i'm completely cured and happily giving birth to my child.
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