Do you find yourself tossing and turning at night, unable to get comfortable because of pain from varicose veins? You’re not alone. Varicose veins, those bulging, twisted veins that often appear on the legs, can cause discomfort, especially when lying down to sleep.

In this article, we’ll explore why varicose veins may hurt at night and provide practical tips for improving sleep quality despite this discomfort.

Why do my varicose veins hurt at night?

Varicose veins typically result from valves in the veins not functioning properly, leading to blood pooling and increased pressure in the affected veins. When you lie down, particularly on your back or stomach, the blood flow in your veins slows down, causing blood to pool in the varicose veins.

This increased pressure can exacerbate discomfort, leading to throbbing, aching, and a sensation of heaviness in the legs; making it incredibly hard to get a good night’s sleep.

How do you sleep with varicose veins at night?

Sleeping with varicose veins can be challenging, but there are strategies you can try to minimize discomfort and improve sleep quality:

  • Elevate your legs: Prop up your legs with pillows while you sleep to help reduce swelling and improve blood flow. Prop them up with pillows or a wedge specifically designed for leg elevation. Even a slight elevation of 3-4 inches can make a big difference.
  • Avoid sleeping on your stomach: This position puts unnecessary pressure on your hips and the back of your legs. The added pressure can be a trigger for pain and throbbing. Instead, opt for sleeping on your side, preferably your left side. This position takes pressure off the vena cava, the body’s largest vein responsible for returning blood to the heart.
  • Wear compression stockings: Compression stockings can help support your veins and improve circulation, reducing pain and discomfort. They gently squeeze your legs, aiding blood flow back to the heart and reducing the pooling of blood that contributes to discomfort. Talk to your doctor about the right type and compression level for your specific needs.
  • Practice relaxation techniques: Stress can be a factor that worsen pain from varicose veins. To alleviate stress, adopt relaxation techniques such as deep breathing or meditation before bedtime to promote peaceful relaxation. These practices can help calm your mind and body, promoting better sleep. Adding a cup of hot decaffeinated tea to your nighttime ritual can help enhance your relaxation.

Tips and Tricks for Coping with Varicose Vein Pain at Night

Beyond the basics, here are some additional tips for managing varicose vein pain at night:

  • Maintain a healthy weight: Excess weight can put added pressure on your veins, exacerbating varicose vein pain. Aim for a healthy weight through a balanced diet and regular exercise. Even a modest weight loss can make a big difference.
  • Stay physically active: Regular exercise, such as walking or swimming, can improve circulation and strengthen the muscles that support your veins. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise most days of the week.
  • Avoid tight clothing: Tight clothing, particularly around the waist and legs, can restrict blood flow and worsen varicose vein pain. Opt for loose-fitting, non-binding comfortable clothing instead that allows for proper circulation.
  • Practice good posture: Poor posture can contribute to varicose vein pain. Sit and stand up straight to promote healthy blood flow and reduce pressure on your veins.

Take the First Step Toward Better Sleep

If varicose vein pain is disrupting your sleep and impacting your quality of life, don’t hesitate to seek help from a varicose vein specialist. Schedule a free consultation with MAPS, Chicagoland’s leading vein clinic, to explore personalized treatment options tailored to your needs.

Don’t let varicose vein pain keep you up at night. Take control of your sleep and overall well-being today.

Schedule a Free Consultation with MAPS