The standard veins - blood vessels carrying blood to the heart - have valves that unlock and shut to allow the flow of blood only in a single route. When these valves turn feeble and they do not close completely, blood often flows in the reverse direction and collects at places leading to swelling veins. Generally, known as varicose veins, such weak veins appear in the legs nearly most of the times. However, it may be noted that hemorrhoids too are varicose veins that occur in the anus.
In the instance of majority of the people, varicose veins cause gentle uneasiness. However, in acute instances, blood as well as additional fluids pour out of the veins into the adjacent tissues, resulting in flaky, tingling skin or distension in the ankles owing to the fluid that has accumulated in the legs. Occasionally, one experiences heavy or painful legs, especially following prolonged period of standing. When this problem is ignored and not treated timely, these weak veins have a propensity to deteriorate over a period of time.
It may be noted that hormonal as well as genetic aspects have a vital role in the development of varicose veins. In effect, this condition has a tendency to progress in families and it is known to occur four times more in women compared to men.
Besides the genetic and hormonal factors, there are other causes that may possibly result in the development of varicose veins and they may include pregnancy, obesity, or lifting heavy objects quite often. All these may result in too much pressure on the veins. In addition, pregnancy also results in hormonal changes that are thought to make the veins in the leg weaker. Precisely speaking, people who spend most of their time standing or who usually cross their legs or people who undertake excessive work-outs are more likely to develop varicose veins. In addition, people who endure congestive heart failure - the incapability of the heart to pump blood appropriately, or liver ailments are known to be at risk of developing varicose veins.
Supplements and herbs
A number of specific herbs and supplements are useful in treating varicose veins. For instance, taking vitamin C in conjugation with flavonoids, which assist the body in utilizing vitamin C as well as vitamin E may well augment the blood circulation, in addition to fortifying the walls of the veins and capillaries. In addition, you may also include the herb gotu kola along with vitamin C and vitamin E and it is perhaps the most helpful herb for treating varicose veins. Gotu kola has several vital functions, including improving the blood circulation, maintaining the suppleness of the veins as well as enhancing the quality of the connective tissues adjoining the veins.
The herb bilberry harmonizes well with gotu kola. Precisely speaking, both these herbs are marketed in the form of a single supplement. Alternately, one may substitute gotu kola and bilberry with horse chestnut. Horse chestnut seems to regulate swelling as well as inflammation and also lessen the fluid build up within the veins. In case you are unable to find the homogeneous horse chestnut extract, you may well replace the herb with another herb, called butcher's broom. In addition, grape seed extract contains procyanidolic oligomers (PCOs) and this may be taken in the dosage of 150 mg to 300 mg every day to treat varicose veins. Generally, it takes about three months for the results of treatment with PCOs visible. It may be noted here that you may take the herbs and vitamins that suit you for an indefinite period of time.
Aromatherapy is also a useful natural means to treat varicose veins. In effect the essential oils of a number of herbs are effective to treat this condition. Provided these essential oils are used appropriately, they are most likely to have helpful healing effects on the body as well as the soul and our mind and fortitude.
Essential oils to use when treating varicose veins naturally are:
Besides using herbs and supplements and aromatherapy, you will also find that specific homeopathic remedies are effective in treating varicose veins as well as providing relief from symptoms, including inflammation and pain. For this, you need to take the selected homeopathic remedies a number of times every day. In order to treat more acute as well as chronic problems of varicose veins, you ought to use the chosen homeopathic remedies for a period of about a month. You may, however, discontinue the medication for a week or little more and evaluate your condition.
A number of homeopathic remedies that are useful in treating varicose veins are discussed in brief below.
Aesculus is an effective homeopathic remedy for varicose veins, especially when they are swollen and their color changes to purple. It is useful when the skin above the varicose veins becomes puffy and the varicose veins ulcerate. Patients are depressed and have a feeling of weightiness, fullness and they experience penetrating, burning lightening pains. In addition, people suffering from varicose veins and requiring Aesculus also experience a blockage of the liver accompanied by constipation.
The condition of such patients deteriorates when they are standing, walking, in motion, when there is cold, during winter as well as in the daytime. They feel better when they are in the open air.
The homeopathic remedy Bellis is useful for treating inflamed and puffed up veins. It is especially effective for pregnant women having varicose veins, which makes it hard for them to walk. People requiring Bellis for treating varicose veins usually endure excruciating varicose veins - extremely aching or battered soreness. They feel heaviness in the legs, which seem to be always tired. Such patients also have distended tissues - as if they are bruised and have a propensity to bleed. Such people may also be enduring old sprains or injuries.
The condition of these patients deteriorates when they are walking rapidly, when anyone touches them, when there is warmth or the chilliness. They feel better when they are in motion and when the affected area is rubbed.
- Carbo veg.
Carbo veg. is an appropriate homeopathic remedy for blocked blue vein system just below the skin. In this case the varicose veins appear to be blotchy and purple and have a propensity to turn into ulcers. People enduring this type of varicose veins are usually slow and lethargic both mentally as well as physically and their limbs often lack sensation or become dormant. In such conditions, the patients feel feeble, cold and their limbs, especially the lower legs, become blue and they experience a burning pain.
The condition of such patients deteriorates when there is warmth, cold air, just before they go to sleep and when they consume wine. They feel better when they keep their feet in an elevated position.
- Fluoric acidum
The homeopathic medication Fluoric acidum is effective for treating varicose veins, especially those that ulcerate. It is especially beneficial for women who have given birth to several children. In such cases, the patients experience burning pain in small blemishes and the distended veins and capillaries form small knots. The blood vessels become feeble and inflamed. People requiring this homeopathic remedy have sensitive veins and have an urge to walk rapidly.
The condition of such patients deteriorates during night, when there is warmth, when they are touched by anyone or when they are sitting or lying. They feel much better when they bathe in cool water and move briskly.
Hamamelis is recommended for patients who are enduring varicose veins in the legs and thighs accompanied by a feeling of heaviness in the limbs and distension as well as pain. Such patients experience passive bleeding from the varicose veins and feel cold down their legs. This is an effective homeopathic remedy for pregnant women suffering from varicose veins. Hamamelis is required by patients who have susceptible, throbbing and irritable varicose veins. Such people experience scratchiness and feel exhausted and bruised. In this case, the varicose veins have a propensity to ulcerate.
The condition of these patients deteriorates when there is any kind of jarring, when they are touched, when there is warmth, wetness, when they experience pressure and when they are in a sitting position. They feel better when they are lying or in motion.
Lachesis is the appropriate homeopathic remedy for sensitive, inflamed, enlarged or ulcerating veins. The veins system in the face and skin is affected; in addition, the veins at the back of the knee, in the arms, foot and leg are knotted. The veins are inflamed (phlebitis) and there is bluish-red distension the length of veins. The veins turn firm and like ropes. The skin above the affected veins is spotted, purple in color and bruised. In this case, the veins bleed very easily, while the patients are always passionate, chatty and distrustful.
The condition of such patients worsens when they are pregnant, reach their menopause and when they wake up from sleep. Their condition also deteriorates when they are touched, when there is heat, when they consume alcohol and especially feel uneasy in the left side.
Pulsatilla is an effective homeopathic remedy for complicated, feeble and inflamed veins that turn into bluish color, are throbbing and cause a stinging pain. There is phlebitis and burning sensation, while the patients experience heaviness in their legs. Such patients have distension of the feet owing to fluid accumulation. There is occasional bleeding from the affected veins and the patients feel cold, are gently emotional, tearful and in need.
The condition of such patients worsens when there is any heat from outside, when they rest, during pregnancy and in the evenings. They feel better when there is cool breeze and the affected areas are rubbed mildly.
The homeopathic medicine Sepia is effective in treating absence of suppleness of the veins, which are inflamed, blocked and turned into purple color. In such cases, the areas that are most affected include the legs and thighs. Sepia is especially beneficial for women who are pregnant, enduring uterine prolapse and have menses accompanied by tearing pains. In this instance the varicose veins are distended, scratching or have a tendency to develop into ulcers. The patients who require Sepia experience heaviness in the affected areas and bleeding from the varicose veins. In addition, they suffer from stripping pains. Slow bowel movements, delayed menses, bleeding, sloppy muscles and also depression.
The condition of these patients deteriorates when they are walking, when there is cold or when they are touched. On the other hand, they feel better while walking briskly, when there is warmth and while uncovering.
Additional things you may do
In addition to using prescription drugs, herbs and supplements, homeopathic remedies and aromatherapy, there are a few more things that you may do to cure as well as avoid development of varicose veins. For instance, you may exercise, but should be careful to avoid activities that have a high impact. For instance, you may walk, cycle or swim instead of jogging. In case you are lifting weights, ensure that you do not use those that are extremely heavy.
Whenever it is possible, you should keep your legs in an elevated position, as doing this aid in putting off the blood from accumulating in the veins. In addition, also try and keep away from remaining in a sitting or standing position for a prolonged period. Also do not keep your legs in a crossed position. In case your work demands that you sit at a desk throughout the day, you should ensure that you take interim breaks and walk around a little to keep the blood circulation in the legs normal. In addition, you may well also loosen up your muscles and twist your toes to improve the blood circulation.
Another advice is not to wear tight fitting clothing, counting shoes, belts and panty hose. Wearing these things may tighten the veins within as well as in the region of the legs and makes it difficult for blood to circulate in the upward direction, which shouldn't be the case.
As far as food products are concerned, try and keep away from ice cream, sugar, peanuts, fried foods, cheese, junk foods, alcohol, salt, animal protein, refined and processed foods and tobacco. The diet of patients enduring varicose veins should contain high amounts of fiber with a view to avoid constipation as well as keep your bowels clean.
It is also important that when you are enduring varicose veins you should keep away from scraping the irritated or inflamed skin in the affected areas. Scratching the skin just above the varicose veins may result in bleeding and even ulceration.
Following a bath, you may apply castor oil directly to the skin above the varicose veins and also massage the oil on your legs from the feet upwards.
The standard dosage of the herbs and supplements that is useful for treating as well as avoiding development of varicose veins are mentioned below.
- Vitamin C / Flavonoids, the regular dosage of vitamin C is 1,000 mg taken thrice every day, while flavonoids should be taken in dosage of 500 mg daily. In case you suffer from diarrhea owing to using these supplements, lower the dosage of vitamin C.
- Vitamin E, the standard dosage of vitamin E is 400 IU taken twice every day. In case you are already taking any blood thinning medication, it is advisable that you talk to your doctor before taking this supplement.
- Gotu kola, take the extract of gotu kola in dosage of 200 mg thrice daily. If you are using the raw herb, the daily dosage is 400 mg to 500 mg taken three times. While purchasing the herb endure that the product is standardized to enclose 10 per cent asiaticosides.
- Bilberry, the herb bilberry should be taken in dosage of 80 mg thrice daily. While buying the product ensure that it is standardized to enclose 25 per cent anthocyanosides.
- Horse chestnut, the normal dosage of horse chestnut is 500 mg taken every day morning. The product ought to be standardized to enclose about 16 per cent to 21 per cent escin.
- Butcher's broom, take the herb butcher's broom in dosage of 150 mg thrice every day. While purchasing the product ensure that it is standardized to enclose about 9 per cent to 11 per cent ruscogenin.
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