Swollen legs are often associated with venous leg disease, ie varicose veins, but not always. In addition to venous disease, swollen legs can be a consequence of chronic heart failure, kidney disease, inflammation of subcutaneous tissue in the legs (erysipelas, cellulitis), lack of lymphatic drainage (lymphedema), lack of leg rest, the use of certain medications and more.
Swollen legs causes
Swollen legs occur when vessels leak fluid and it accumulates in the intercellular tissue. In the case of pregnancy due to increased secretion of hormones, the capillaries become more porous and thus facilitate the release of fluids. In addition, increase in women’s weight and volume of the uterus, compresses the veins in the pelvis and prevents the proper flow of blood from the periphery to the heart. Therefore, pregnant women often have a heavy and tingling feeling in legs, especially in the third trimester of pregnancy. Women who are struggling with problems of varicose veins have similar symptoms.
Another reason for leg swelling may be a disturbance in kidney function or even heart problems. In such cases the drugs for the kidney disease treatment or for improving heart failure should be used. If it is found that the problem is linked to heart valve, surgery is possible.
Swollen legs treatment
To reduce swelling in legs,it is recommended to hike. Although it seems difficult and exhausting, the walk helps the circulation, which is normally weak and because of it you feel the weight in your legs. It is also good, when you sit, to keep legs elevated as much as possible. Since the salt binds itself to water, try to eat the less salted food. It has been proven that elastic stockings compress evenly the entire leg and facilitate circulation. They are not recommended for pregnant women, but they can help people with varicose veins to ease the discomfort.
If the swelling of the legs is accompanied by inflammation and pain, there may be clots in veins or the veins wall inflammation. In this case, you should definitely visit a doctor who will prescribe proper medication.
Swollen legs occur most frequently in summer and this unpleasant condition can be removed with a few simple exercises and relaxation:
To improve circulation in the legs elevate your legs at least ten inches higher than your hips level while sitting. You can stock some books on the chair and put your legs on them. Keep them elevated for few minutes and then shake them slightly. Repeat this activity whenever possible.
Strengthen your calves
Grasp your right hand Achilles tendon of the left foot, and tighten the ankle with your thumb and forefinger. Drag your finger, gently massaging the legs. You should apply especially good massage to your calf, and then repeat the whole procedure with the other leg.