Getting adequate sleep daily is essential for good health. It even boosts productivity in other areas of life, such as work. But unfortunately, some people struggle with getting sleep. That can be attributed to several factors such as distractions from social media, blue light from smartphones, stress, and some health conditions such as varicose veins.
Do Varicose Veins Really Affect Your Sleep?
Varicose vein is a vascular disorder that makes veins in the legs swell. It causes itchiness and pain, affecting daily activities such as standing, walking, sitting, and sleeping. You’ll find that after a whole day of standing or walking, you can barely get any sleep due to the feeling in your legs and in some cases pain.
According to a study by NIH, most patients complain of cramps and pain, especially at night. Other prognostics of the disease, such as swelling and itchiness, make sleeping even harder.
How Can You Sleep with Varicose Veins?
The symptoms of varicose veins appear to increase at night and can affect your sleeping pattern. If not addressed, the problem could spill into other areas of your life, such as your work and family life. You’ll become less productive and distracted, affecting your ability to work or interact with your family or other people.
Some people also have an uncontrollable feeling to move their legs due to the pain and discomfort. It is important to visit a vascular specialist to determine whether these symptoms are due to varicose veins or restless leg syndrome.
1. Try Different Sleeping Postures
If you suffer from varicose veins, your sleeping posture affects your sleep. Some postures such as laying on your stomach or back increase blood circulation to the legs. Instead, it would be best if you tried laying down on the left side. That way, you’ll be taking some pressure off the vena cava, or the largest vein in the body that is located on the right side of your heart. This vein pumps blood to your legs, arms, and other extremities.
By laying on the left side, you will be improving blood circulation in the body and consequently minimising the chances of blood building up in your legs.
Alternatively, you could try raising your legs using a pillow when you sleep. In doing so, you will encourage blood flow to the heart, therefore, preventing the chances of blood collecting in your legs.
2. Engage in Some Exercises
Exercises to help promote muscle build-up and general blood circulation. Some exercises such as jogging, running, biking, and squats help build strong leg muscles. They equip your legs with a strong core structure that helps support veins when pumping blood.
Any form of leg exercise will help strengthen the muscles and promotes healthy blood flow in the body. If you maintain your weight at an ideal level, you’ll find getting some sleep will be much easier.
3. Stretch and Walk Around
If you have tight and constricted muscles, you will typically feel the symptoms of your leg veins with cramps and swelling, especially at night or during long periods of sitting. Therefore, it is important to stretch regularly to allow your muscles to relax.
Regular stretching or short regular walks if your work requires sitting will help promote proper blood flow, allowing for better sleep in the evening.
4. Drink Plenty Water
Your body is made up of 60 percent water. Even simple body functions such as blood circulation, muscle relaxation, and biochemical communication depend on proper hydration.
Hydration is even more crucial for people with varicose veins which allows your body muscles stay flexible and relaxed.
5. Try a Foot Massage
You can opt to use professional services or do some DIY massage at home. Either way, ensure that your legs are rubbed gently before bedtime. Put some focus on the calf muscles. It will help improve blood circulation, eliminating blood pooling in your legs.
6. Try Acupuncture
Acupuncture is a proven method of alleviating certain body ailments. It is important to work with a specialist who understands the ins and outs of this treatment method and working with varicose vein. It will help relieve your blood pressure and prevent blood from pooling in your legs if done effectively.
7. Eat a Balanced Diet
Eating a balanced diet helps improve your overall body health. You should try having enough proteins, vitamins, carbohydrates, and minerals daily to promote your health. A balanced diet helps promote your blood circulation reducing the chances of blood pooling in the legs, swelling, and other symptoms of varicose veins.
8. Avoid Oily and Processed Foods
Steer clear of oily and greasy foods which have high amounts of cholesterol, affecting blood flow in your veins.
You should also avoid processed foods due to the high amounts of sugar and focus on healthy meals that improve your health.
9. Use Compression Socks
Thanks to technological advancements in this era, you can now wear compression stockings to help relieve the symptoms of varicose veins. The elastic garments help reduce blood pooling in your veins or any swelling associated with the disease. They allow you to sleep well at night without having to worry about pain, discomfort, or itchiness. It is important to talk to a specialist about the right compression level and legging size suited for you.
These techniques help reduce the pain and discomfort associated with varicose veins. Some essential tips that you can use include regular exercises stretching, eating a balanced diet, frequently hydrating, trying massage and acupuncture, wearing compression socks, and sleeping on your left side. Combining these methods helps better your health, giving you a chance to sleep better at night.
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