If you are wondering about varicose veins and hot tub use, then you’ve come to the right place. Although you may want to seek relief from painful varicose vein symptoms by using heat, this is not recommended. Instead of reducing the leg pain, swelling, itching, and cramping you are experiencing, soaking in a hot tub can actually make things even worse.
Below, we address whether hot tubs are good for varicose veins. We also discuss our recommended methods to help reduce symptomatic pain and discomfort. We want you to know that along with certain lifestyle modifications, you may benefit from minimally-invasive vein treatment. Here’s what you need to know.
Can a Hot Tub or Bath Affect My Varicose Veins?
The simple answer to whether a hot tub or bath can affect your varicose veins is yes, absolutely. But to better understand why, let’s discuss what causes varicose veins to occur in the first place.
Varicose veins are caused by underlying vein disease, also known as venous insufficiency. Vein disease occurs when ongoing strain is placed on tiny vein valves, usually in the legs, ankles, and feet. These vein valves are responsible for sending blood back to the heart in one direction, and against gravity. When your veins are strained due to various factors, the valves can become damaged and begin to malfunction. This often causes blood to pool in affected regions of the body.
Although some people believe that varicose veins are merely cosmetic, this isn’t true. A range of undesirable symptoms accompany developing vein disease. Along with the appearance of varicose and spider veins, you may experience:
- Swelling in the legs and ankles
- Tired, aching legs
- Burning in the calf or thigh
- Leg pain that feels better when you walk or raise your legs
- Itchy, dry skin
- Numbness or tingling sensation
- Difficulty standing for long periods
If your malfunctioning veins are left untreated, you are at increased risk for developing dangerous health conditions. These include blood clots and venous ulcers, or non-healing, open wounds. One type of blood clot, known as Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT), can be life-threatening and requires emergency medical care.
Are Hot Tubs Bad For Varicose Veins?
Although hot tubs and other heat sources don’t cause varicose veins or vein disease, they can nonetheless exacerbate your symptoms. This is because heat causes veins to swell further. When this happens, your blood circulation can slow and cause blood to pool in place. This often intensifies painful and uncomfortable symptoms like aching, swelling, itching, and cramping.
The bottom line is that varicose veins and hot tub use are not a recommended combination. If you have varicose veins, we suggest avoiding hot tubs entirely.
Does Heat Affect My Varicose Veins?
Hot tubs are not the only heat source that can exacerbate your varicose vein symptoms. It is common for symptoms to worsen during the hot summer months. You may also face difficulty washing up at the start or end of your day. Hot baths and varicose veins often don’t play well together. Even taking hot showers or using heating pads can make matters worse.
Instead of turning to heat sources to find relief from vein pain and discomfort, we recommend the following:
- Move around more: Physical activity is key to getting your blood circulating. Try to avoid long periods of standing or sitting. Following a daily exercise routine, along with moving around frequently throughout the day, can help relieve your varicose vein symptoms.
- Maintain a healthy BMI: Being overweight or obese is known to increase your risk of developing varicose veins. It can also cause vein symptoms to become more severe. Although losing weight won’t make your varicose veins disappear, it may help reduce your symptoms.
- Wear comfortable clothing and shoes: We suggest loose, non-constrictive clothing and avoid wearing tight-fitting dress shoes or high heels. Ill-fitting items can cause swelling and other venous issues to worsen.
- Put your feet up: It makes sense that elevating your feet can help get your blood flowing in the right direction –– back toward your heart. When you do this, you may experience significant pain and symptom relief. Try propping your feet up on several pillows while lying flat on your back. You can also lie on the floor and place your feet on a chair or sofa.
- Ask your doctor about using compression: Wearing compression socks can help prevent additional varicose veins. You may also find that they help manage your current symptoms. Your doctor can prescribe the right level of compression for your situation.
- Hydrate: Drinking enough fluids can reduce symptoms like swelling and cramping, especially during hot weather. Dehydration brought on by heat can further increase leg cramping. The right amount to drink depends on factors like age, sex, diet, and weight. Be sure to ask your doctor about what amount is best for you.
- Manage other health conditions: Some health issues, such as high blood pressure and diabetes, can impact your veins. For the sake of your overall vein health, work with your doctor to properly manage any underlying conditions.
- Consider vein treatment: A range of treatment options exist that can address your varicose veins and help you avoid serious complications. You may be surprised to learn how easy and convenient varicose vein treatment is with USA Vein Clinics.
Minimally-Invasive Varicose Vein Treatment at USA Vein Clinics
You don’t need to have vein surgery to effectively treat your varicose veins. At USA Vein Clinics, we offer minimally-invasive, outpatient vein treatment that can quickly alleviate your suffering. Our treatments take only 15 to 30 minutes, after which you can leave immediately and return to most normal activities.
We offer several treatment options, including Endovenous Laser Therapy (EVLT). EVLT is often referred to as the gold standard of vein treatment. However, other methods can also be highly effective in targeting malfunctioning veins.
For instance, your doctor may recommend ClariVein, Varithena Foam, Ultrasound-Guided Sclerotherapy, or a combination of techniques. All of our proven treatments have one common goal: to divert blood flow from malfunctioning veins to healthy ones.
If you are ready to discover the many ways your life can improve after treatment, schedule an appointment online today. There’s no need to suffer any longer. For your convenience, we offer appointments at 90 clinic locations nationwide. You can choose an in-person or telemedicine consultation with one of our leading vein specialists.
Wherever you choose to visit us, we look forward to helping you take back control of your life!