What is Varicose Veins
Healthy veins are suppose to pump blood towards the heart and lungs. When valves in our veins fail to pump blood up towards the heart, the blood is accumulated in the veins of the legs, the pressure of the blood causes the veins to become enlarged, weak and twisted which is called varicose veins. This is not something that is serious in its early phase, but if it is not taken care of, as the condition progresses to next levels it can lead to many serious problems. But don’t worry, yoga can definitely aid in not only providing relief from pain but also restore damaged veins back to their normal function.
Causes of varicose veins
- Hereditary- It could be in the genes.
- Aging- with aging skin loses its elasticity
- Weight gain- increases the pressure on the veins which restricts the blood flow.
- Prolong period of standing or sitting.
- Pregnancy and miscarriage- hormonal changes during pregnancy and quick deliveries.
Symptoms of Varicose veins
Some people may not have any symptoms at all. But the most common symptoms include
- Veins looks twisted, enlarged, bulging.
- Painful, tired, achy, burning sensation in the legs.
- Swelling around the ankles and feet.
- Increased cramping or pain after sitting or standing for long periods of time.
- Itchiness in the legs, around the varicose veins.
According to HealthLink BC “when your skin changes colour around the varicose veins, looks dry,thin and inflamed or your legs tend to swell” then be alarmed that you need medical attention because these are serious symptoms that cannot be ignored.
Treatments for Varicose veins
- Wearing compression socks will prevent the symptoms to worsen but will not cure them.
- Elevating your feet by placing them on a pillow or cushion will promote blood flow to the heart.
- Massaging your legs with preferably castor oil in the upward position is very beneficial to relief pain and increase blood circulation.
- Cycling and walking will provide you relief.
- For preventing and curing this condition, it is very effective to practice yoga for varicose veins.
How Yoga provides relief from Varicose veins?
Yoga helps to strengthen the overall muscles of the leg and entire body. Yoga provides a good stretch to the feet, thigh, ankles, calves and feet which helps in relieving the pain. When you elevate your legs during the asanas, the blood flows upwards and reduces the stress on the veins, this provides your body the strength to fight against the pain.The asanas promote blood circulation throughout the body ,this further reduces cramps, fights fatigue and flushes out toxins from the body which itself is a cure to all diseases. Yoga is popularly known for relaxing your body so of course in this case it helps your legs relax as well.
Yoga Poses for Varicose Veins
While performing these poses you need to be gentle on your body, if you try to speed up the practice you might make your pain worse. Also these poses are helpful for the common symptoms of sciatica, if you are experiencing serious symptoms as mentioned above, then you should consult with your doctor. You should not force your body into a pose, perform the poses that makes you feel comfortable, discontinue the pose right away, that makes your pain worse. Here are seven yoga poses for varicose veins that will provide you immediate relief.
1. Naukasana (Boat Pose)
- Lie straight on the floor on your back.
- Raise both your legs as much as you can.
- Raise both your hands, in a way as though you are trying to reach the feet.
- Your body will now be at a 45 degree angle.
- Try to hold the pose for a count of ten.
- Release your body gently back towards the floor.
Note: Perform the pose gently so that you do not exert any sudden force on your back.
2. Padahastana (Hands to feet pose)
- Stand straight with your arms reaching over your head.
- First inhale and then exhale and bend forward with bringing your waist forward, followed by your neck and at last head.
- It is fine to bend your knees as a beginner (if you have a stiff back, bend only according to your capacity).
- Touch your palms to the ground.
- Inhale and return to the standing position.
- Repeat the same steps for 5-6 times.
3. Pigeon pose (Eka Pada Kapotasana)
- Bring your body on your hands and knees like in a table top position.
- Bend your right knee forward and slide it between your hands.
- Your right heel should be close to your pelvic area.
- Stretch your left feet straight towards the back as much as you comfortably can. (if you are uncomfortable place a blanket under your left knees and a block under your left thigh).
- Make sure your body does not swing to the right, keep your body in the middle.
- Inhale and open your chest forward and raise your head straight.
- Exhale and guide your body towards the mat with the help of your hands.
- Reach your arms out straight over your head, lengthen your arms as much as you can.
- Place a block under your chest if you want to.
- Stay in the position for 20 seconds.
- Repeat the same steps by bringing your left leg forward.
More effective poses for sciatica relief
What things to avoid
- Avoid wearing high heals as they interfere with the muscle contraction and blood circulation.
- Do not wear tight clothes.
- Try not to stand for longer time unless you are bound to do so because of your job. If your job requires you to stay on your feet, then keep stretching and exercising your legs.
- Avoid eating cold and sweet foods like ice-cream, chocolate.
- Limit your intake of salt and sugar as both of these tend to thicken your blood.
- Do not cross legs while sitting as it prohibits blood circulation.
- Quit smoking as it contributes to more pain.
Natural treatment for Varicose Veins by Dr. Murali
Dr. Murali Manohar talks about the ayurvedic treatments for varicose veins. He suggests to eat garlic, onion, ginger and pineapple to prevent build-up of proteins that makes skin more lumpy near varicose veins. These foods contain bromelain and also enzymes that help to break-up fibrin. Dr. Murali, advices that fish is very beneficial for varicose veins while red meat consumption should be reduced. It is recommended to drink water with two spoons of apple cedar vinegar in it; drink this in the morning before eating breakfast and this will reduce the pain to a great extent.
I hope my post will help you stay in good health and provide you relief from varicose veins. If you have any comments or suggestions, feel free to leave them below. I will get back to you as soon as I can. Thank you for visiting this website.
By National Heart Lung and Blood Institute. – Varicous veins., Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=6885995