More than half of all people suffer from varicose veins during pregnancy. The veins are clearly visible on the surface of the skin. They appear as snake-like bluish lines and sometimes form palpable nodules. Varicose veins develop because the walls of the blood vessels become softer due to the influence of pregnancy hormones. These dilated blood vessels then become prominent. Many pregnant people dislike the appearance of varicose veins. However, they can also be itchy and painful and are especially uncomfortable if they occur in the genital area. If this happens, it’s called vulva varices, which are often noticeable by a dull pain. Hemorrhoids are also dilated veins and thus can be called a kind of varicose veins. Varicose veins usually disappear again, usually within six months of delivery.

Exercise is the best way to prevent varicose veins. High intensity walking and hiking activates the blood flow in the legs. Biking, dancing or regular swimming also help. You should not cross your legs when you sit. Blood circulates best when you stretch them out. You should also elevate your legs as often as possible, as this helps the blood to flow back to the heart. If you are prone to varicose veins, you should also keep your legs slightly elevated at night. You can put a pillow under your feet, for example. Showers that alternate between warm and cool water can also help prevent the formation of varicose veins. The rapid alternation of warm and cool water activates blood circulation and thus stimulates the circulatory system.

If you are already suffering from varicose veins, you may find it helpful to apply cooling compresses with quark, for example, to the affected area. Plant-based ointments can also have a soothing effect. Check with your doctor or midwife to see what remedies they recommend.

Wearing compression stockings supports your connective tissue. These are particularly tight, firm support stockings. You can get them at the medical supply store or at the pharmacy. Compression stockings exert pressure on the veins and thus relieve the blood vessels. The pressure from the outside also prevents fluid from leaking out of veins and into the surrounding tissue. In this way, compression stockings can also help prevent water retention in the legs. You should have compression stockings custom-made to your measurements. The cost of the stockings may be covered in full or in part by your health insurance. Check with your doctor to see if it is possible for them to write you a prescription.