It’s no secret that pregnancy brings a multitude of body changes and possible symptoms or side affects. Some women experience very few while others experience numerous side effects throughout the course of their pregnancy. It can be frustrating for a woman to witness so many changes happening to her body and although most of these symptoms and body changes are harmless and tend to go away once the baby is born, others may linger, even worsen after delivery.
For many pregnant women, varicose veins appear with pregnancy. The appearance of varicose veins becomes noticeable, especially on the legs and are not only considered unsightly for many, they can also be painful and cause fatigue, burning and itching. Varicose veins during pregnancy most likely develop due to the pressure that the growing uterus applies to the Inferior Vena Cava vein, which is the large vein that carries blood from the heart to the legs and feet.
Because they are typically hereditary in nature, there isn’t much to be done in the way of preventing them, so women whose mothers experienced varicose veins during their pregnancy are more likely to develop them as well. Half of all pregnant women will experience varicose veins with most noticing the veins in their legs, though others may get varicose veins elsewhere.
To help alleviate the discomfort associated with varicose veins and keep them from becoming worse, there are a few things a woman can do including getting regular, low-impact physical activity such as simply taking regular walks, sleeping on the body’s left side, which helps to keep pressure off of the Inferior Vena Cava vein, keeping the feet elevated whenever possible, and taking regular breaks from prolonged sitting or standing. In addition, pregnant women should consider wearing support hose, which helps to compress the legs and encourage blood flow.
Of course, many post-pregnancy women are found with lingering varicose veins that they’d rather not have at all, and this is where vein disease treatment can be beneficial. A vein specialist can help women suffering from varicose veins by offering various surgery and treatment options after diagnosing the individual’s situation.
Untreated varicose veins can lead to more serious problems including venous eczema, which is extremely itchy-dry skin, bleeding, venous ulceration, which include sores near the shins and ankles, and superficial thrombophlebitis, which are clots within the vein.
If you are experiencing symptoms with varicose veins, the first step is to schedule a consultation with a vein specialist to determine which method of treatment is best for you.