Pregnancy and Varicose and Spider Veins

Posted: Monday, July 29, 2013   |   Revised: August 6, 2013

Pregnancy and Varicose and Spider Veins

Spider veins and varicose veins are quite common. People often associate them with aging; however, many women discover spider veins or varicose veins for the first time during pregnancy. Baby Center points out that you’re more likely to get varicose veins if you have a family history of them.  Each successive pregnancy increases the likelihood of getting more spider and varicose veins, as does being overweight, carrying multiples or standing for long periods during your pregnancy.

Should you be concerned about spider veins or varicose veins that appear during pregnancy?

You have a lot to worry about when you’re pregnant. The last thing most women want is yet another cause for concern. While varicose veins are not always problematic and spider veins are commonly harmless, it’s a good idea to consult with your Michigan vein doctors to see if there is cause for concern in your case.

It’s always better to be safe than sorry — especially in light of the fact that untreated varicose veins may lead to blood clots and other potentially dangerous conditions for mother and baby alike. Vein surgeries aren’t always necessary to fix the problem, but it doesn’t hurt to get a second opinion from a local vein center before deciding.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women’s Health warns that during pregnancy, it’s possible for women to develop varicose veins in non-traditional locations such as the vagina or buttocks. Be aware of this and discuss it with your physician immediately, especially if you’re experiencing major difficulties sitting or dealing with the pain or swelling.

On a positive note, during the nine months of pregnancy, lifestyle changes may be all that are needed in terms of spider vein treatment and prevention.

Are varicose veins preventable during pregnancy?

There are things you can do, that will help you prevent varicose veins or spider veins. If you already have them, doing these things can help prevent them from worsening and posing greater risks to your health during the pregnancy and afterward. These things include:

  • Exercise regularly (there are many pregnancy friendly workouts you can follow)
  • Elevate your legs
  • Avoid sitting or standing in the same position for long (if you work in a position that requires this, seek ways to bend one knee at a time throughout the day and elevate your legs, higher than your heart, in the evenings)
  • Keep your weight in check
  • Wear support stockings/gradient compression stockings when you’ll be sitting or standing for prolonged periods (avoid elastic knee socks though as they are sometimes too constrictive near the cuff)
  • Sleep on your left side to improve return of blood to your heart

Little things like these can make a huge difference in your susceptibility for developing varicose veins during pregnancy and beyond.

Varicose veins or spider veins are not a given during pregnancy. However, if it happens to you, it’s best to understand what’s going on so you can make informed decisions about whether vein treatment is necessary. Visit a vein clinic for further examination and peace of mind. If you’ve had problems with your veins during one pregnancy, getting treatment for your vein problems before the next pregnancy can save you a lot of discomfort down the next time around.

For more information about varicose or spider veins during pregnancy, contact Michigan Vein Care Specialists at (734) 274-5624 or fill out our consultation form.

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