I will confess. I have heard of Phlebitis. My Mum suffers from it and my Grandmother did as well as I recall. But I have not got a scooby doo about what it actually is. Just as well I am learning along with you guys this month! Let’s see what my book of choice is saying about Phlebitis then, shall we?
If you have a bruise on your leg and you cannot remember bumping into anything, you need to take a close look. One of your veins might be bright red and appear hard to the touch. Chances then are pretty high that the vein has become inflamed due to a mini blood clot and that has caused blood to back up. This inflammation is phlebitis. Usually it occurs in your legs as gravity lets your blood pool there, but you can get them in your arms as well. If the inflammation is on the surface, then we can treat it with home remedies. If the inflammation is deeper, then please seek attention from a medical professional as it can be very dangerous.
So what can you do? When you are sitting down, elevate the legs. My Mum has a natty tilting chair, but you can use a pouffe, or put your legs up on the sofa as well. Ideally you should elevate the legs to above your heart, so you might need to monopolise the cushions as well as the sofa.
I am afraid it is not very pretty, but adding support hose to your wardrobe will really help matters as well. It takes some getting used to, I understand, but once you are, it isn’t really that bad. Your doctor can prescribe which sort of pressure stockings are right for you and major pharmacy chains have some choice as well.
You might want to take an aspirin every day, and if the inflammation is mild, then some ibuprofen might help with the discomfort as well. And obviously, if you are overweight, then lightening some of that load will help with the blood pooling in the legs. Drinking a glass of red wine with dinner every day can help, and anything which improves your circulation has got to be a good thing.
Some other things you can do to improve your circulation include eating some hot chillies – they improve blood flow all around the place (you know, that hot sweaty feeling when you have just eaten a hot, hot chilli?) and application in an embrocation externally might help as well. You might also like to look into taking a ginseng supplement. It has been used for hundreds of years as a circulation tonic in Eastern herbalism, and should not be overlooked as a potential help. Start with a low dose ideally.
If you don’t have phlebitis, but want to prevent it. the get walking, fast, swinging your arms as you do so. A daily stroll which increases your heart rate will also make sure your circulation is in tip top shape.