Varicose veins are common among many, but how do they happen and why are they painful? It is estimated that 15% of men have varicose veins and 25% of women.
The key to understanding may be to learn a little bit about how circulation works in our extremities. Arteries bring blood filled with oxygen to deliver the needed oxygen to all the parts of our bodies. Then veins return the deplete blood back to get more oxygen and make the return trip. The veins in the legs are constantly working against gravity to perform the job of circulation.
There are one way valves inside the veins that open to let the blood flow through and then close so there is no back flow. When these valves become weakened and damaged blood can back up and begin to pool in the veins. The result is that the veins begin to swell.
The walls of the veins have elasticity. Much like a rubber band when are continually overstretched they tend to loose their shape. This makes the walls of the veins weaker and the valves more likely to have issues as well. The end result is that the veins continue to stretch and eventually twist and these are what are referred to as varicose veins.
There is some research that suggest varicose veins run in families. Because is has to do with weak walls and valve problems it is likely that there could be a connection.
There are some contributing factors to varicose veins.
*sedentary life style
There are some signs and symptoms that may indicate a problem with varicose veins. They may include:
What can be done in the mean time to help prevent the problem from occurring? There are some general guidelines to help us keep healthy veins. If part of the job is sitting for long periods of time try to sit for at least part of the time with the feet on a foot stool and raised, the higher the better. If the job requires standing most of the time have a foot stool nearby and stand on one foot at a time. Walk on every break. Transfer weight from one foot to the other. Wearing support stockings can be help.
Another good exercise of sorts it to lien on the floor and put your feet up on the wall for about 15 minutes each day. This will allow the blood to flow with gravity come down.
Treatments are available and every increasing, so visit a physician if varicose veins become an issue.