Winter is here, and while you may be content to bundle up on the sofa with a blanket and a good book, limited physical activity can negatively affect your vein health. Inactivity slows the movement of blood through the veins and can contribute to or worsen your varicose vein condition. Don’t let cooler weather and varicose veins get the better of you this year. Stay active and take advantage of the benefits cooler weather can have on your veins.
Warm weather and heat can cause your veins to dilate and your blood to pool, but cold weather does the opposite. It shrinks your veins, contributing to better blood flow to all parts of your body. This means varicose veins will appear smaller, and you will notice a marked decrease in pain, swelling, and cramps.
How to stay active when it’s cold outside
It’s important to move your body every day, even when the weather outside is frightful. Boost your immunity and improve circulation with these indoor and outdoor activities:
- Brisk walking or hiking
- Jogging or running
- Raking leaves
- Shoveling snow
- Ice skating
- Cross-country skiing
- Active housework (e.g., vacuuming or sweeping)
- Mall walking
- Stair climbing
Be sure to talk to your doctor before beginning any new exercise routine.
Benefits of treating varicose veins in winter
The positive connection between cool weather and varicose veins is undeniable, colder temperatures not only make your blood vessels shrink but they also help reduce symptoms of pain and swelling.
While vein treatments can be performed at any time throughout the year, many people choose to get their varicose vein condition treated during the winter. Why? Many of the recommended post-procedure practices involve wearing compression stockings and covering the treated area to avoid sun exposure. The benefits include:
- Less sun exposure
It’s important to avoid exposing your legs or other treated areas to the sun’s rays because the UV rays can cause permanent skin discoloration.
- More comfortable recovery
Compression stockings are often required after varicose vein treatment to encourage healthy blood flow and healing to the treated area. While they’ve become more stylish, wearing them in the summer can be uncomfortable.
- Easier scheduling
Many people tend to schedule vein treatment in the spring and summer months when their legs are more likely to be exposed. Fewer people think about their bulging, ropy varicose veins underneath their warm winter layers. This allows you more flexibility with scheduling your procedures.
Now is the perfect time to treat your varicose veins; ask your healthcare provider to refer you to a Virginia Vein Care location near you for expert care and treatment. Our specialists are skilled and experienced in safely treating several vein problems like spider veins, varicose veins, venous insufficiency, and deep vein thrombosis.