The holidays are a popular time for travel, but if you suffer from bulging, uncomfortable varicose veins, you might be concerned about how those long hours on a plane or in a car will impact your condition. The good news is there are some steps you can take on your travel days to keep your veins healthy and minimize painful side effects. Check out these tips from The Vein Center of Florida & South Baldwin to make your days of travel as healthy and comfortable as possible.
Whether you are cooped up in a car or on a plane, it is important to get up and move about periodically to give those swollen vessels a break. On long car rides, plan to stop and walk a bit about every two hours. If you are flying, try to get up and move about the cabin every hour or so. The simple change in pressure, combined with the physical activity, will give the circulation in your lower legs a much-needed boost.
Work Your Calves
If you can’t get up and move during your travels, there are other ways to work your calf muscles while you remain seated. Simple calf flexes or raises will allow the calf muscles to help your veins push blood back up to the heart. Try to choose an aisle seat on the plane or give yourself a little extra leg room in the car to flex and stretch those calves about once every hour.
Wear Compression Stockings
Compression stockings offer gradient pressure designed to help your lower leg veins move blood back up the leg to the heart. These specialty socks come both over the counter and in prescription-grade through your physician. In addition to enhancing blood flow, compression stockings are often effective in reducing uncomfortable symptoms that accompany varicose veins, such as aching, swelling and leg cramps.
Elevate when You Can
Once your travels are complete, give your legs a break by elevating them for a period of time. When you put your legs up, you are reducing the pressure of gravity, making it easier for the lower legs to move the blood back to the heart. Prop up the feet with a couple of pillows to actually raise the legs above the heart for a little extra assistance.
Holiday travel may be in your plans, but those days on the road don’t have to make your varicose veins worse. With these tips in mind, you can arrive at your destination without painful symptoms interfering with your holiday plans. To learn more, contact The Vein Center of Florida & South Baldwin at 800-910-VEIN.