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Preventing varicose veins

NHS Choices Medical Reference

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There is little evidence to suggest that you can stop varicose veins from getting worse, or prevent new ones developing. However, if you already have varicose veins, there are a number of things that you can do that may help to relieve any pain or discomfort.

Sitting or standing still

If you can, avoid sitting or standing still for long periods of time. If you are unable to avoid sitting or standing, make sure that you change position frequently and try to move around at least once every 30 minutes.

Do not cross your legs because this can make your symptoms worse.

Take regular breaks

If possible, take regular breaks throughout the day. Try also to keep your legs raised while you are resting, because this will help to improve blood flow.

Ideally, raise your legs above the level of your heart. When resting, you may find that lying down and placing your legs on three or four stacked pillows will help to relieve any pain and discomfort.

Exercise regularly

Regular exercise is a great way of keeping your legs active and it will help to improve your circulation.

Exercise will also enable you to maintain a healthy weight, help prevent serious health conditions, such as coronary heart disease, as well as improving your overall general health and fitness.

See the Live Well section of the website for more information about health and fitness.

Medical Review: October 03, 2010

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