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What can I do now to prevent varicose veins later?

Is it possible for anyone to get varicose veins, even if they do not run in the family? I am wondering what I can do now, as a thirty year old woman, to prevent varicose veins from appearing later in my life?

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Doctors Answers (3)

I would recommend choosing an occupation with some walking, movement and sitting, and try to avoid choosing an occupation with prolonged standing, which is common in retail sales, teaching, nursing, esthetician/hair cutting, and flight attendants. Start a walking program and consider wearing compression hose on your legs during the portions of the day you need to stand. There is no advantage in sleeping in the hose. Avoid high-heeled shoes and wear flats with good arch support. Avoid frequent and lengthy use of hot tubs. Finally, wear maternity compression hose as soon as you find you are pregnant. Wear the 15-20mmHg hose daily and you do not need to sleep with them on. Also, continue to wear the hose for 4-6 weeks following the delivery. These guidelines will help reduce the chances and severity of developing varicose veins.

I would not worry unless they run in your family. Things can happen in life and I can tell you to have strong calf muscles or wear compression hose, but neither will prevent veins in the future. Possibly Daflon 500 or Vasculera may help prevent developing veins in the future, but why take this if you have nothing now.

Typically there is a family disposition to developing either spider or varicose veins. If not directly from a parent, a grandparent or aunt may have them. Women are more likely to have them due to the effect of female/pregnancy hormones on the veins. If you have had children already and do not have any vein issues, it is unlikely you will develop them. However, living a healthy lifestyle (weight, diet, hydration, exercise, no smoking, etc.) improves your circulation. Wearing compression hose (these are not your grandmother's stocking!) for extended travel by car or plane, getting up, and walking more often - if sedentary - all help. That said, there are some people who do develop some veins as they get older for unknown reasons.

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