How Soon Will Varicose Veins Form During Pregnancy?
There’s no question that pregnancy is responsible for some of the most profound physical changes a woman will experience in her lifetime. Fortunately, many of these are temporary and resolve on their own after giving birth, though they can certainly be a nuisance in the meantime. One of the most common side effects of pregnancy is the development of varicose veins, which can be unsightly, painful, and often embarrassing. At Lynch Vein & Aesthetics in Peoria, AZ, board-certified general surgeon and vascular expert Dr. Matthew Lynch understands how frustrating and uncomfortable varicose veins can be for anyone – but particularly during pregnancy – and is committed to helping patients find relief from their disruptive symptoms. In this blog, you’ll gain a better understanding of why varicose veins are common during pregnancy, when they may appear, and what – if anything – you can do to prevent them.
What are varicose veins?
Varicose veins are enlarged blood vessels that often appear as lumpy, twisted, blue or purple bulges on the legs. Technically speaking, varicose veins are caused by a weakening of the walls and valves of blood vessels, which can be related to increased pressure in the vessels, excess blood volume, and other factors. Common causes of (and risk factors for) varicose veins include:
- Genetics/family history
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Long periods of sitting or standing
Why do varicose veins appear during pregnancy?
There are several factors that contribute to the development of varicose veins during pregnancy for some women, including increased blood volume and the weight of the growing uterus, adding pressure to blood vessels in the pelvis. Additionally, varicose veins during pregnancy often run in the family.
When do varicose veins start appearing during pregnancy?
While varicose veins can develop at any point during a woman’s pregnancy, they are most likely to appear in the second or third trimester as the uterus grows and blood volume increases.
Will varicose veins go away on their own after pregnancy?
For most women who did not have varicose veins prior to pregnancy, their veins will eventually return to normal after delivery. However, it is likely that women who experience varicose veins during one pregnancy will redevelop them during a subsequent pregnancy.
Can varicose veins be treated while you’re pregnant?
Unless varicose veins are posing a significant risk to the mother’s health – such as a blood clot or deep vein thrombosis (DVT) – vein removal treatments should be reserved until after delivery. However, there are several things patients can do in the meantime to reduce their risk of developing new or worsening varicose veins during pregnancy. These include:
- Avoid standing or sitting for long periods of time
- Take short, frequent walks around the house
- Don’t cross your legs
- Elevate your legs/feet while sitting or lying down
- Wear compression socks as directed
- Sleep on your left side when possible
While varicose veins may not be avoidable during pregnancy, these behaviors can certainly help reduce your symptoms – which will likely resolve on their own soon after delivery. For patients who may continue to struggle with varicose veins after pregnancy, Dr. Lynch offers a wide range of the most current and effective vein treatments available today, including Alma VascuLife™, to restore smooth skin and soaring self-confidence once again.
Say goodbye to varicose veins with advanced vein removal treatments in Peoria, AZ
Whether you are looking for ways to prevent varicose veins during pregnancy or treat lingering vascular concerns after delivery, we can help. To learn more about your options for vein treatment in Peoria, AZ, call Lynch Vein & Aesthetics to schedule your one-on-one consultation with board-certified general surgeon Dr. Matthew Lynch today.