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Useful Essential Oils
Which essential oils are effective for varicose veins?
Cypress Essential Oil has traditionally been used for varicose veins. Dilute it 2-4% in any carrier oil (10-20 drops per tablespoon) and apply it very gently and with only upwards strokes to your varicose veins. Do not massage it in. Note: Do not use this during the first five months of pregnancy.
About The Condition
What Are Varicose Veins?
Varicose veins are visible, twisted, swollen veins that commonly appear in the legs or feet. According to WebMD, sometimes they can be “surrounded by patches of flooded capillaries known as spider veins.” Women are at least twice as likely as men to develop them, and they affect about 23% of Americans. Varicose veins are generally not considered a serious issue unless they cause your legs to ache or cramp or if they are a sign of other more serious circulatory issues. Sometimes, they can cause a painful blood clot with inflammation of the vein.
What Causes Varicose Veins?
Varicose veins are caused by blood valves that are not working properly and, thus, are allowing the blood to gather in the vein instead of being pushed uphill.
According to WebMD, you are more likely to develop varicose veins if:
- your profession involves standing for long periods of time
- it is common in your family
- you are obese
- you have taken birth control pills
- you have had postmenopausal hormone replacement therapy
- you have a history of blood clots
- you have had pressure placed on the abdomen by wearing a girdle or from conditions like constipation or tumors.
Sometimes the varicose veins can be caused by injury to the skin, vein surgery or exposure to ultraviolet rays.
What Are Conventional Medical Treatments For Varicose Veins?
If you are experiencing pain with your varicose veins, generally doctors recommend that you elevate your legs when resting and/or wear special compression stockings. They also recommend good skin hygiene and losing weight if you are obese. Walking can also help as it increases blood flow. Procedures such as sclerotherapy, laser treatments, radiofrequency occlusion, and surgery are also available, but they each have various drawbacks and risks.
If you wish to avoid getting varicose veins, doctors advise you to avoid standing for long periods (especially if there is a history of varicose veins in your family), elevating your legs whenever you are resting (especially if you are pregnant), avoiding sitting cross legged, and getting up and going for a walk every hour if you are sitting at a computer or on airplane.
What Are Alternative Treatments For Varicose Veins?
Some people recommend:
- Coenzyme Q10, as it is said to help with circulation and tissue oxygenation
- Omega-3 oils, as they are said to help improve the elasticity of blood vessels
- Horse chestnut seed extract, as it is said to help varicose veins and circulation in general, although it does have side effects, so check with your doctor before taking it
- Ginkgo biloba
- Gotu Kola
- Pine Bark extract
- Grapeseed oil
- Vitamin K (but only if you are deficient in it).
However, as far as we know, there have not been any formal studies on any of these. And of course, essential oils have also been used for varicose veins. For more information, see the Useful Essential Oils tab.