Our circulatory system is what keeps our blood flowing throughout the body. Arteries send fresh blood from the heart to the tissues and organs, and the veins take the “used” blood back to the heart for reprocessing and refreshing.
After blood passes from the arteries (specifically, the tiny arterioles) through the capillaries, it moves into the smaller veins (venules) and then to the larger veins. From there, blood goes to the heart and then the lungs for reoxygenation and refortification.
To keep blood flowing properly toward the heart for reprocessing, there are tiny vein valves throughout the veins that prevent blood from flowing backward. If the vein valves malfunction, the blood can pool in the vein – causing a range of symptoms, especially varicose veins and spider veins.
If you want to keep your veins healthy and keep your legs looking smooth, you can take steps to improve your vein health. Let’s talk about some of the main ways in which you can help keep your veins healthy, and where you can go in Kansas City for outstanding vein care.
#1: Stay Active
Staying physically active helps to foster excellent circulation throughout your veins and arteries. Avoid being sedentary – if you notice that you have remained seated for hours, get up and walk around.
Regular low-impact exercise such as walking, biking, and swimming improves vein health and also helps you maintain a normal weight. Being overweight or obese can put excess pressure on the veins.
By staying hydrated, you are keeping your blood thinner, which makes it easier for the veins to circulate blood. Having plenty of water in your system flushes out and neutralizes excess salts and sugars in the blood.
Note: One major cause of dehydration is smoking. The chemicals in a cigarette contribute to narrowing of the blood vessels, thickening of the blood, and deoxygenation of the blood. Kicking the habit will therefore help to keep you hydrated.
#3: Elevate Your Legs
Keeping your legs elevated above your heart at the end of a long day will benefit your leg veins. This action assists with the return of blood to your heart by engaging gravity, and it can also help ease pressure on your legs and relieve pain and swelling.
This is very helpful for those with spider veins and varicose veins. Elevating your legs even for just a few minutes can benefit your circulation.
The reason why varicose veins tend to develop in the legs and usually nowhere else on the body is because of the downward force of gravity on the legs. Gravity pulls blood downward, forcing the veins to work hard to push blood upward toward the heart. The arms and other areas of the body tend to have much less pressure from gravity placed on their blood vessels.
The legs are also the farthest away from the heart, which makes those areas have to work that much harder to push blood back upward. The veins in the arms, head, and torso are much closer to the heart and enjoy much more natural circulation.
#4: Wear Compression Stockings
The way the veins send blood back to your heart is through tiny contractions. The use of compression stockings helps the tiny muscles supporting the veins to maintain stability and to move blood back toward the heart. If you are susceptible to vein issues due to genetics, your occupation, or pregnancy, compression stockings are an excellent preventive measure.
#5: See a Vein Specialist
If you notice your veins becoming more prominent, or if you are having unexplained leg pain, see a vein doctor for an evaluation and possible treatment. Symptoms that merit a visit to a vein specialist include a feeling of pain and heaviness in the legs at the end of the day, leg swelling, warmth, and varicose veins.
Top Vein Specialist in Kansas City, MO
From spider veins to varicose veins and leg pain, Dr. Scott Darling here at Missouri Vein Specialists regularly treats them successfully. Dr. Darling is a triple-board-certified vein doctor who is highly experienced in addressing vein problems and restoring vein health, so you can have smooth, clear skin on your legs again.
To schedule an appointment with the best vein doctor in KC, call our vein clinic today at (816) 792-3400 or fill out our appointment request form online now. We look forward to being your partner in improving vein health!