Can Essential oils treat Varicose Veins?
Those who suffer from the discomfort of varicose veins, I am sure they must have looked at alternative techniques to ease pain or to avoid surgery. These raised, swollen or purplish-bluish twisted veins most frequently appear on legs. Other than the veins being an eyesore, their symptoms can be uncomfortable, too, including aching, burning, throbbing, muscle cramps, swelling, and itching.
Even though scientific evidence regarding the use of Essential oils is scant, everyone from massage therapists to naturopathic experts swear by them. Essential oils offer a popular, non-medical choice.
What are Varicose Veins?
Varicose veins are enlarged, bulging veins. Main cause of varicose veins is faulty valves which don’t sufficiently push blood from the legs to your heart. The lack of circulation causes blood to pool, which in turn leads veins to bulge and protrude against the skin. As legs are farthest from heart, varicose veins are most prominent there.
Insufficient blood circulation and weak or damaged valves are common causes of varicose veins. Other possible causes include long periods of sitting or standing, genetic predisposition, pregnancy, being overweight, and hormonal changes in women.
Are Varicose veins harmful?
Apart from physical symptoms, which can impede daily life, varicose veins could lead to other health issues. Severe varicose veins can also lead to blood leaking in tissue and skin. Varicose veins can also lead to hardening of led tissue or in some cases, it could lead to formation of deep vein thrombosis or blood clots.
If Varicose veins cause little discomfort, then treatment is not necessarily required. There are plenty of ways to ease symptoms of swelling, aching, itching or cramping.
How Essential oils can help?
Although, there is no published scientific research on how essential oils can help with Varicose veins, Essential oils can be used to increase blood circulation, reduce swelling and ease pain.
Essential oils use is increasingly popular, as they are known for healing and calming properties. Psychologically they have calming effect on brain.
Essential oils cannot fix the valves in veins and cure varicose veins but they do possess healing properties that can ease the symptoms.
Best Essential oils for varicose Veins:
Lavender Essential oil: Lavender is one of the most versatile oils and is known for its calming properties. It has the ability to reduce pain and can also be used to treat discomfort caused by varicose veins. Lavender oil can mitigate pain and inflammation caused by this condition.
Frankincense Essential oil: Frankincense is known for its calming aroma and anti-inflammatory properties.
Rosemary Essential oil: Ancient Greeks revered the rosemary plant for its various health benefits. This herb works well to reduce inflammation caused by varicose veins.
Geranium Essential oil: Geranium oil is known to have anti-inflammatory effects, which is important when treating varicose veins. Geranium is a pain-reliever and antispasmodic. It’s also been shown to improve blood circulation and hormonal imbalances.
Helichrysum Essential oil: Helichrysum is pain-relieving, anti-coagulating, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, and can help relieve muscle pain.
Other oils which can help increase circulation and ay help alleviate varicose veins pain nd inflammation are:
- Thyme Essential oil
- Chamomile Essential oil
- Lemongrass Essential oil
- Ginger Essential oil
- Clary Sage Essential oil
- Yarrow Essential oil
- Cypress Essential oil
How to use Essential oils for Varicose veins:
The most effective way of using essential oils is to apply them on skin and gently massage that area. Essential Oils must always be diluted in a carrier oil like coconut oil, olive oil, jojoba oil or sweet almond oil.
Mix 2-3 drops of Essential oil with 1 teaspoon of Carrier oil. Gently massage your legs and feet with this blend.
- Essential oils are only for external use and should never be ingested
- Store essential oils out of reach of children and store them apart from other products. Some essential oils can be fatal to pets and therefore always research before using them
- Essential oils must ALWAYS be diluted before applying on skin as they are highly concentrated as can cause irritation. You can dilute them in carrier oil of your choice and the max concentration of essential oils should be 3-4%
- Always do a patch test before applying on larger areas of skin
- It is unclear what effects essential oils have on pregnant and breastfeeding women. While some consider them safe, many doctors advice pregnant women to avoid use of essential oils
- Always buy pure essential oils and stay away from fake counterparts as they wont contain same therapeutic benefits
It is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle that can prevent varicose veins from forming. One should maintain healthy weight, move body regularly, alternate between sitting and standing and eat a clean healthy diet. Many Essential oils possess pain-relieving, anti-itch, anti-spasm, and anti-inflammatory properties, making them particularly useful for improving blood circulation and managing the symptoms associated with varicose veins. They are not a guarantee cure for the problem, but may bring down some of the appearance of varicose veins and reduce pain associated with it.
If your varicose veins are causing a lot of distress or you have severe swelling of your feet and ankles, then you should see a doctor to rule out any underlying medical conditions and to find out if more conventional treatments might be a better choice for you.
Disclaimer: The information provided on this page is for informational and educational purposes. I am not a medical professional and highly recommend consulting a doctor before using essential oils as part of any medical treatment.