How to Heal Vulvar Varicosities During Pregnancy and Postpartum
Vulvar varicose vein compression therapy treatment during pregnancy can relieve pain and reduce symptoms.
You are not alone if you have vulvar varicosities. This may not be a hot topic of conversation, but many women during pregnancy experience swelling of veins in the vagina or vulva. This condition often occurs during pregnancy due to increased blood flow and pressure on the pelvic floor resulting in varicose veins of the vulva or vagina.
The symptoms of vulvar varicosities are:
- pain in the vulva area
- feeling of fullness or pressure
- swelling and discomfort
In more extreme cases the full, dilated blood vessels can resemble dark purple, swollen veins (often really looking like large earthworms). There are several steps you can take to prevent this condition from worsening, reduce swelling, and potentially heal the varicosities.
Take action to care for yourself so that your pregnancy will be comfortable and healthy.
#1 WEAR A COMPRESSION SUPPORT GARMENT
Wearing an abdominal band with compression therapy groin bands is essential in supporting vulvar varicosities. Direct compression on the vulvar varicosities and/or vaginal varicosities help to prevent swelling, adds support to the swollen veins and helps move the blood along in the pelvic floor area to prevent pooling and varicosities. Some support wear products also provide shoulder straps to the system which is even more beneficial because they provide a lift to the abdomen further reducing pressure on the pelvic floor.
#2 AVOID STANDING FOR LONG PERIODS OF TIME
Avoid standing for long hours and try to take breaks to relieve the pressure on your pelvis with short intervals of sitting or lying down. If you have a job which requires standing, it is even more important to wear compression support during these hours to counter act the pressure from your added weight of the baby and gravity pulling downward on your varicosities. Ask your employer to provide intervals of time where you can change your standing position to sitting. Ideally lie down for 10 minutes here and there throughout the day. This is obviously not realistic for some jobs, however, you are pregnant and do have rights at your job relating to the safety of both you and your baby. Get a note from your obstetrician stating your needs and present this to your employer.
#3 ELEVATE YOUR HIPS
When you lie down, elevate your hips by putting a pillow underneath your bottom. This helps improve the blood flow in the pelvic floor area and reduce swelling in the veins.
#4 COOL COMPRESS
When you have a chance to lie down, place cool compresses on the vulvar varicosities to ease pain and reduce the swelling. Make sure the packs are refrigerator cool, not frozen so that the temperature feels comfortable and relieving.
#5 AVOID LIFTING HEAVY OBJECTS
If you have a toddler this is difficult, but try to avoid lifting heavy objects. Squat down to talk with your toddler, or sit down and ask him/her to sit on your lap to talk instead of lifting him/her. Ask for help lifting groceries or other heavy objects. ASK FOR HELP! I need to say this again because women are generally the ‘helpers’ and tend not to ask for help. As a pregnant woman you need to take care of yourself. Who knows, you may make another person’s day by reaching out and asking for their help.
You can get even more information on vulvar varicosities or confirm the information in this short article by reading: