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Self-Help for Varicose Veins

by Jane Meggitt

If you hate your varicose veins but the issue is primarily cosmetic, there are ways to treat them on your own rather than undergo surgical removal. However, if your veins cause you pain it’s important that you visit a doctor rather than try home remedies.

Compression Stockings

Compression stockings are the old standby for varicose veins. They may sound about as sexy as incontinence underwear – but today’s version is not your grandmother’s compression hose. For the most part, compression stockings are indistinguishable in appearance from ordinary stockings, and they are available in all types of shades and patterns. Wearing these stockings not only provides relief from swelling, but can keep varicose veins from getting worse.

If your various veins are mild, support pantyhose or knee-highs may do the trick and ease aches and swelling. More serious cases require medical compression stockings, usually available at pharmacies. Properly fitting compression stockings hold your legs snugly, but they are comfortable. They put slight but steady pressure on the veins, improving the blood flow so it is less likely to pool in your veins.


Regular exercise aids a multitude of ills, and varicose veins are no exception. Keeping your legs busy is the best way to combat varicose veins, so daily walking is key. The act of pedaling a bicycle increases blood flow, so cycling is another excellent way to help your veins. At work, take the stairs instead of the elevator. Besides daily walks, there are some specific exercises that help get blood flowing. Here are a few:

  • Pedaling – if riding a bike is not feasible, pretending is the next best thing. Lie on the floor, elevate your legs and pedal in the air. Over time, work on raising your legs as high as possible – higher pedaling results in better circulation.
  • Leg lifts – this classic buttock and thigh-toning exercise also helps your circulation.
  • Knee flexes – Lie on the floor and lift your knees to your chest, one at a time. At the same time, roll your ankle.

If you are overweight, going on a diet can help with vein issues. A healthy diet combined with regular exercise improves your overall health.

Put Your Feet Up

A few simple do’s and don’ts can improve varicose veins. Take the opportunity to put your feet up as often as possible. If you plan to watch TV or an hour or two, do so with legs elevated. When sitting, avoid crossing your legs.

Following these basic self-help guidelines for varicose veins should improve not only your circulation, but your quality of life.

If you or someone you know would like to learn more about vein treatment, please feel free to schedule a consultation or contact one of our representatives today!

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