Does Summer Heat Make Varicose Veins Worse?

If you suffer from varicose veins, our hot Arizona summers may not be your favorite time of year—and not just because summer fashions expose your legs and you can fry an egg on the sidewalk.

Although heat doesn’t cause varicose veins, it can aggravate them. Here’s why. When your body heats up, the veins dilate to allow more blood to flow to the surface of the skin. That, combined with sweating, helps your body avoid overheating. This increased blood flow is the reason your skin may be red after a hot shower or after doing outdoor chores in the midday sun.

What is a great coping mechanism for your body can be a problem for your varicose veins. As you may already know, varicose veins happen when the valves in your veins aren’t able to move blood efficiently back toward the heart. The pooling blood causes the enlarged, bluish appearance of the veins.

The summer heat means even more blood is going to those surface veins, making the work even harder for them. That’s why varicose vein sufferers may have more aching, cramping, heaviness, and fatigue symptoms in the heat.

If moving to the North Pole for the summer isn’t an option, what can you do? Here are a few tips:

  • Try to avoid working or exercising outside during the hottest part of the day.
  • But do stay active. Moving around, even to take a short walk, helps boost your circulation.
  • Stay hydrated. Make sure to drink plenty of water or other healthy drinks.
  • Wear compression stockings to give your veins more support.
  • Put your legs up for about 15 minutes two or three times a day.
  • Avoid hot tubs and saunas, and take warm showers and baths, rather than hot ones.

If those suggestions don’t provide enough relief and you’re ready for a more permanent solution for your varicose veins, we can help. We can treat your varicose veins with minimally invasive procedures and surgeries so you can enjoy summer more comfortably.

Talk to our team to learn more about the best conservative and interventional treatment options for your vein condition.

The advice and information contained in this article are for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace or counter a physician’s advice or judgment. Please always consult your physician before taking any advice learned here or in any other educational medical material.

For more information on vein diseases and the treatments provided by the specialists at Palm Vein Center or to make an appointment, call 623-201-4777. We look forward to meeting you!