In our daily life, how much do we actually think about our vein health? Are we taking enough precautions or have we made changes to improve our vein health?
We are well informed about the importance of normal blood circulation which helps us to lead a healthy life. The formation of blood clots can disrupt this flow and create potentially fatal conditions for you. Although blood clots are not always life-threatening, they are not to be taken lightly. Blood clots that form in a vein deep in the body are called Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) and they commonly occur in the thighs or lower legs.
If a blood clot as such breakaway, it can cause pulmonary embolism, where the blood clot travels up to the lungs and cause blockage in the arteries. Your lifestyle or your habits might be putting your body at risk unknowingly.
Find out if you are guilty of these habits and how to avoid blood clots.
Sitting For Too Long
You might be guilty of this practice either due to your job requirements or because you are binge-watching your favourite show. Sitting for extended periods is a major risk factor for deep vein thrombosis. Whether you are relaxing or working, make it a habit to take a small walk every 30 minutes. This practice will ensure that your blood circulation keeps flowing.
Hydrate On The Move
There are higher chances of getting dehydrated when travelling whether by road or by air. Since it can be an inconvenience to stop at rest stops along the way, you might choose to avoid drinking enough water. When it comes to flying, many people try to avoid the dreadful trips to the washrooms, therefore, limiting their water intake and leading to dehydration.
However, flying increases the chance of dehydration and makes you sit for long periods which can affect your vein health. Sitting continuously for more than 2 hours while flying or travelling by road can cause the risk of developing blood clots to increase. Walking breaks taken every one to one and a half hours while travelling by car can reduce the risks. If flying by plane, then try to have a small walk between the aisles as often as possible to keep your calf muscles pumping.
Many airlines carry seatback cards that will show you exercises that can be carried out while seated to prevent the formation of blood clots. Movements that trigger the calf muscles such as rocking your feet back and forth can help in healthy blood flow, reducing the risks of blood clots.
Since dehydration is one of the main culprits of blood clot development, it is best to stay away from liquids containing caffeine, alcohol, and sugary drinks. You can also use compression stockings to prevent any formation of blood clots, preferably prescribed by your doctor or get them over the counter.
Movement During Pregnancy
It can be quite tiring to move around during pregnancy as exhaustion could set in easily. Changes in hormones during pregnancy are a key factor in blood clot development, so a sedentary lifestyle during this period could lead to health risks. Vein pressure in your pelvis and legs is increased during your pregnancy. Reduced movement and taking bed rest for long periods will slower blood circulation in the calf muscles aiding in the risks of blood clots.
Going for regular walks when possible, and not limiting yourself to the bed or couch for lengthy periods can reduce the possibility of the formation of blood clots. Sleeping on the left side during your pregnancy will promote good circulation and blood flow to areas where it might be more difficult during pregnancy.
Better Circulation While Sleeping
If you get a good amount of sleep, which would be about 7-8 hours, your legs would have minimum movement during that entire period. This immobile period does not work well with blood circulation. To keep your blood flow healthy even when you are asleep, try keeping your legs elevated. A few inches raised with the help of pillows can help proper blood flow and reduce the risk of blood clots. Make sure that your legs are placed higher than the level of your hip for more effect.
Know The Signs of A Blood Clot
Blood clots shouldn’t be left untreated, they are potentially life-threatening. If you observe any of the symptoms below, consult a vein specialist immediately.
- Swelling of your entire leg or arm where the blood clot formed
- Colour Change in your arm or leg with a red/blue tinge or warm/itchy feeling
- Feeling of dull to intense pain when the clot gets worse
- Trouble in breathing can be caused due to the clot being moved to the lungs. You might also experience chest pain, dizziness, bad cough and even coughing up blood. Immediately Call 911 to receive medical assistance straight away.
- You may feel a cramp/muscle spasm in your lower if there is a clot in your calf
If you are worried about blood clots in your legs or suspect that you may have any of the above symptoms, Give us a call at 937-325-3830 or Book an Appointment. Our team at Comprehensive Vein Care will be happy to assist you and help you lead a healthy life.