Why do women develop vein health issues after pregnancy?

pregnant woman hands massaging swollen feetSome say pregnancy is a magical time, but they usually aren’t pregnant when they say that! Many pregnant women (and their partners) can tell you pregnancy is very hard on the body, even after you have the baby. You gain weight, experience skin changes and sleep problems, your eyes and feet change, and it’s very uncomfortable and painful at times, despite how magical the process is.

The pregnancy journey affects every part of your body, including your vein health. In fact, many women often discover their first spider or varicose veins after pregnancy! After all you’ve gone through during pregnancy and delivery, you then get a lovely souvenir of spider or varicose veins. That doesn’t seem fair! Why does this happen? Let us tell you how pregnancy affects your vein health.

During pregnancy, your body produces more female hormones like estrogen and progesterone. These hormones are essential for the growth of your fetus and the changes your body goes through, but they affect your vein health. For example, progesterone level fluctuations can often weaken the valves in your veins, especially in the legs, leading to blockages. Blockages will eventually develop into varicose or spider veins issues.

But hormones aren’t the only issue damaging your vein health during pregnancy. Your body is also producing more blood to meet the needs of your growing fetus. The increased blood flow puts even more pressure on your strained circulation system, increasing the likelihood of vein damage.

Pressure is another factor during pregnancy that affects your vein health. Not only is there the pressure of added blood flow, but your body also experiences increased pressure from increased water retention, weight gain and a growing fetus. All of this additional pressure strains your circulatory system and your veins.

Another unfortunate side effect of pregnancy is leg pain and swelling. Swelling issues in your legs also strain your veins and can damage them. One of the ways many women cope with swelling and leg pain is to begin wearing compression stockings during pregnancy. These tight, form-fitting stockings help to stabilize your legs, reduce the pain from swelling and improve circulation. During pregnancy, our doctors will not recommend invasive vein treatments like sclerotherapy or EVLA. Instead, they will suggest using compression stockings until you give birth.

As you can see, pregnancy is not easy on your vein health. Even though it’s amazing that the female body can grow and develop another human being, it’s still a significant transition for your body. Unfortunately, for many women, it’s also one of the main reasons they will develop varicose or spider veins. We’re proud to help many new moms find relief from the pain of the varicose or spider veins issues they may have developed after going through pregnancy. If you’ve noticed vein health issues after giving birth, call today to book your consultation for treatment!