Are you expecting a new addition to your family? If so, congratulations! Babies are cute and cuddly. They’re lovely.
Despite their “loveliness”, though, they can play havoc with your body during pregnancy: weight gain, back pain, swelling of the legs and feet. Does this sound familiar?
A common effect of pregnancy is abnormally swollen veins in your legs. Though common, this can have lasting consequences.
You see, your veins have an important task: to transport oxygen-depleted blood and other waste to your heart and lungs.
And when you’re pregnant, the veins in your legs have to work much harder — increased blood volume and the extra weight of a growing baby can interfere with your blood circulation. Your veins are supported by tiny one-way valves that stop your blood from flowing back. The additional stress on your legs during pregnancy, can damage these tiny valves and cause spider veins and, in more serious cases, varicose veins.
Spider and varicose veins will often go away after pregnancy. However, like the terminator, they’ll be back. You see, once you get spider or varicose veins, the damage is already done. So, they’re sure to reappear during your next pregnancy or even before.
Varicose veins can be very painful. And unfortunately, they can only be fixed through surgery. And even then they can reappear.
Luckily, if you’re aware of the problem, you can prevent vein damage by wearing compression socks.
Compression socks are made from specially selected fabrics that create pressure on the legs, ankles and feet. This pressure reduces the diameter of swollen veins in your legs and speeds up blood flow, which, in turn, helps push the blood up through your legs.
You can buy them with different levels of compression, which is measured in millimetres of mercury (mmHg).
And the compression is graduated. So, the socks are tightest at the ankles and become less so towards the knees. There are socks with uniform compression available, but they are less effective and more restrictive.
If you already have varicose or spider veins, all is not lost — compression socks will make life much more comfortable.
For example, Paula, who suffers from varicose veins, experienced a noticeable difference when wearing compression socks:
“Before I started wearing them, I would notice a varicose vein would stand out on my lower leg after only being awake and walking around for about an hour. Now I wear them all day and at the end of the day when I take them off, there is no vein standing out on my leg. The spider veins are still there but even those are less prominent.”
This content is provided by TXG for information purposes only. We advise anyone interested in this subject to seek qualified professional advice.