Varicose veins are swollen and enlarged veins – usually blue or dark purple – that usually occur on the legs. They may also be lumpy, bulging or twisted in appearance.
There are several types of varicose veins, such as:
Varicose veins develop when the small valves inside the veins stop working properly. In a healthy vein, blood flows smoothly to the heart. The blood is prevented from flowing backwards by a series of tiny valves that open and close to let blood through. If the valves weaken or are damaged, the blood can flow backwards and collect in the vein, eventually causing it to be swollen and enlarged (varicose).
Certain things can increase your chances of developing varicose veins, such as:
Any vein in the body can become varicose, but they most commonly develop in the legs and feet, particularly in the calves. This is because standing and walking puts extra pressure on the veins in the lower body. Varicose veins are a common condition, affecting up to 3 in 10 adults. Women are more likely to develop them than men. Research suggests this may be because female hormones tend to relax the walls of veins, making the valves more prone to leaking. Reflexology can help with hormonal balance, and can promote blood flow and improve circulation, all of which are found to relieve the discomfort of varicose of veins and even reduce them. This is why we suggest wearing Revs® if you suffer from varicose veins as you will receive the reflexology benefits easily while you walk or stand.