Remote work is here to stay. Today’s employers offer diverse options, from fully virtual to mixes of in person and remote. While working from home can have many positive impacts on your health, such as healthier eating habits and a boost to mental health, it’s good to be aware of negative side effects, too.
Working from home often means sitting more and moving less during the day. Sitting isn’t just bad for your heart. It can affect your vein health, too. Here are some steps you can take to maintain healthy veins and avoid harmful habits during your workday.
Healthy Veins are Key to Good Health
When you think of being in good health, having healthy veins may not be at the top of your list. However, veins are key to carrying oxygen-poor blood through your body and carrying it back to your heart as well as taking oxygen-rich blood from your lungs to your heart.
Along with the important role veins have in carrying blood in your body, Dr. Paul Gryzenia, venous insufficiency and varicose veins specialist with Corewell Health, says that if left untreated, poor venous health can lead to “progression of symptoms and complications such as venous ulceration, thrombophlebitis, swelling and cellulitis.”
Varicose veins are also a signal that your veins might be in bad shape. For some people, varicose veins are merely a cosmetic issue but Dr. Gryzenia says it’s an issue that should be taken seriously. He noted that “they’re often the cause of leg pain, swelling, fatigue, among other symptoms and often, if left untreated, can lead to other more serious medical issues.”
If you’re suffering from any of these symptoms, it’s important that you make an appointment to get checked out by a doctor. And with the flexibility that remote work offers, making an appointment is easier than ever to work into your schedule.
How to Improve Vein Health from home
Working from home means more sitting compared to working in an office because there’s no more walking from the car to the office or getting up to go to a conference room or someone else’s desk.
Sitting for long periods of time can lead to worsening vein health, says Dr. Gryzenia. It’s important to move as much as possible throughout your day whether that’s getting a standing desk or desk treadmill. Another option is to set aside time for short breaks to walk around the block or even just your house.
There are other steps you can take to decrease your risk of varicose veins and worsening vein health, as well. Dr. Gryzenia suggests options such as:
- Alternating sitting positions
- Wearing compression socks
- Changing your standing position as often as possible
- Elevating your legs when possible
Additionally, if you do find yourself sitting for extended periods of time, sit with your hips and knees aligned and your knees bent at a 90-degree angle. This upright position, along with a good chair, can help maintain good posture and vein health. While these are all great options, nothing beats moving around as much as you can throughout the day.
Prioritizing Your Health
Remote work can improve your life in many ways, but it’s important to make sure you’re improving your health as well. Making your overall health a priority and taking the steps you to have healthy veins will ensure you have a great quality of life.
Whether you have pain, discomfort or don’t like the way your veins look, take charge and schedule an appointment today. You’ll be all the healthier (and happier) for it.