Do you plan to go hiking this summer?

happy senior couple hiking on the mountain“A walk in nature walks the soul back home.” – Mary Davis, CEO of the Special Olympics

.We’re pretty lucky to live in Tuscaloosa County. There is plenty to do and see, especially if you’re willing to strap on your hiking shoes. This summer, challenge yourself and start hiking. There are some wonderful, easy trails to get started on right here in our county before you progress to some of the more difficult trails in the state.

Start with something easy like the Munny Sokol Park Trail. It’s a gentle 2.5-mile loop, and you can even take your dog (as long as they stay on the leash).

But if you’re ready to graduate to some of the more difficult climbs in the state, such as the Walls of Jericho Trail, it’s best to make sure you’re ready for the difficulty, especially if you’re living with vein issues.

Here are our tips to make hiking easier, even if you have varicose or spider veins.

  • Make sure you have the proper footwear. Choosing the right hiking boot or shoe is a complicated process. Visit your local outdoor recreation shop and speak to an expert. Ensure you thoroughly try your shoes out and break them in before you go for a big hike!
  • Wear compression socks (or clothing). If your legs are prone to swelling or pain, compression wear can help. Make sure to choose the right type of socks to help manage your pain, or keep a couple of different pairs in your pack during the hike. You can even try out athletic compression leggings or outerwear to help.
  • Make sure you stay hydrated. Hydration is so important when you are exercising outdoors, especially if you have vein health issues. You want to ensure that your body has enough H20 in your system to keep your circulation flowing. Pack extra water and stay hydrated as you go.
  • Use walking poles. Walking poles or trekking poles are a great way to alleviate some pressure on your joints as you hike. They can improve your posture and stability and help on uphill stretches. If you’re considering using poles, talk to an expert at an outdoor recreation shop to find the best ones for your body.
  • Bring healthy, low-sodium snacks. Stay away from salty foods like trail mix or beef jerky. They can cause swelling and dehydration. Instead, pack fresh fruit (if you can), whole grains, or dried fruit. Make sure to have plenty of food to keep your body’s energy levels high.

Hiking is a great way to spend time outdoors, make memories with your family, and stay healthy. It’s also an easy way to start exercising. So if you are new to exercise or recovering from vein treatment, start slow. Use the local trails around town to build up your stamina until you’re ready to tackle a more difficult hike.

Don’t wait to book your appointment

41728339 - close up of patient and doctor taking notesDo you remember when you last went to the doctor? On average, Americans go four times a year. In other parts of the world, regular doctor’s visits are common. In Japan, for example, the average is at least 13 visits a year.

Many patients stay away from the doctor because of health insurance issues. For some, the cost of a doctor’s visit is too expensive, so they wait until they have to see one.

Unfortunately, many of our patients come in when their vein health has significantly deteriorated. They ignored the warning signs from their body and waited until the discomfort and pain became almost unbearable to seek treatment.

We can help, even if your vein health issues are severe, but we’d like to encourage you to seek treatment early on. Here are some warning signs to watch out for:

  • Frequent swelling around the ankles, especially after long periods of standing
  • Large, bulging veins that stand out against the skin
  • Blue, green veins that are visible in a type of spider web formation beneath the skin
  • Pain and discomfort in your legs
  • Restless legs at night
  • Itching, patches of eczema, or open sores on your lower body
  • Muscle cramping and feelings of heaviness in your legs

If you are beginning to experience any of these symptoms, it’s time to come in for a consultation. We are here to help. Even if there are no obvious markers of lower venous insufficiency, our doctors will use ultrasound technology to look for underlying problems before they become a significant issue.

There is no cure for venous insufficiency. Our treatments are preventative and here to help stop the problem before it gets worse. The earlier we can detect an issue and begin treatment, the better your results.

We offer various treatments that target a variety of issues, including varicose veins, spider veins, and venous ulcers. These treatments are quick and easy to recover from. Our doctors will work with you to set up a treatment plan that will make you feel great fast. If you have any questions, please ask. Our doctors are experts in the field and are here to help you feel comfortable throughout treatment.

Living with the symptoms of venous insufficiency isn’t easy. It’s uncomfortable, painful, and debilitating. Our goal is to help our patients feel good again. We want you to be free of painful symptoms so you can show off your legs and enjoy life. Don’t wait until your symptoms are already interrupting your life. Please schedule a visit to our clinic. Call now to book your consultation!

Now more than ever it’s time to celebrate your body!

Beautiful curvy women taking a selfie at the beachIt’s been a long year, and now that things are finally looking up, many of us are starting to feel nervous. What’s it like to return to ‘normal life’ after a pandemic? How will others perceive us after a year apart? Will others judge me if I’ve changed? Thoughts like these may be running through your head after a year of social distancing. It’s okay to be nervous, feel a little bit leery, or even afraid of social interaction. Our defense mechanism this past year was to stay home and hunker down. Now that the world is beginning to open up, it can be hard to turn those feelings off.

Another reason you may be feeling nervous is if you’ve gained weight, changed your appearance, or developed health issues during the year away. Many people have, and there is nothing wrong with that. Stress affects your body in a variety of ways, and it’s been an incredibly stressful year.

After a year of quarantine, it doesn’t help to be surrounded by advertisements and media stories on looking your best. These messages are not healthy, and they undermine how hard you’ve worked to stay positive and healthy this year during unimaginable circumstances. So if you are feeling any of those feelings, we have a message for you. It’s okay.

It doesn’t matter how much you weigh, what you look like, or even if you have varicose or spider veins. You are beautiful, just as you are. After the year that we have all experienced, let’s agree to throw away the toxic belief that you need to look a certain way to feel good. You don’t. If we’ve all learned anything from COVID-19, the things that matter most, like our family, friends, and health, can’t be bought.

This past year, we haven’t been able to gather together, have parties, go to the gym, go on vacations, or do many of the things that normally bring us happiness. Instead, we’ve had to gather close with our families, stay home, and stay safe. It’s been a huge sacrifice, and we should celebrate our determination to look out for others.

If you’re ready to seek vein treatment, that’s great. We promise that we’re here to help you feel your best when you come into our clinic. Our treatments aren’t just cosmetic. They are necessary to help remove the painful and uncomfortable symptoms of venous insufficiency. Getting your vein health issues treated won’t automatically increase your confidence. Only you can do that. The treatments we offer help relieve the symptoms that make it harder for you to enjoy your life.

After this hard year, let’s celebrate your body for helping you get through a hard time. Celebrate the time you get to spend with family and friends instead of worrying about what to wear or what you look like. We’ve all learned how hard it is to do life apart from one another. Let’s rejoice in being together again!