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Varicose veins are an unpleasant condition in which the veins have become enlarged. They can cause cramps, pain, itching and swelling and usually affect the legs, though varicose veins can show up in any part of the body. Unfortunately, many pregnant women get varicose veins. It is obvious that you would rather avoid getting varicose veins! What are the risk factors, and what can you do to avoid getting them? Can flying during pregnancy cause varicose veins?

Varicose veins are relatively common in pregnant women. Major blood vessels work hard and direct more blood to your uterus and pelvic organs. Sometimes, this can happen at the expense of blood circulation around the legs, and swollen ankles during pregnancy are a frequent occurrence. Progesterone also relaxes the walls of your blood vessels, thereby further increasing the likelihood that you will end up with varicose veins. So, varicose veins can happen to any pregnant woman, and not just those who also happen to be frequent flying. Air travel slightly increases any pregnant woman's risk of getting varicose veins.

But wearing supportive stockings during the flight, and changing positions frequently, can help decrease the chance that you will end up with this nasty condition. Walk around the airplane as much as you can, and consider flying first class to give you more leg room, so you can stretch your legs even while in your seat. For many of us, flying is a necessary and unavoidable part of life. You can end up with varicose veins as a result of air trips, or you could fly during your whole pregnancy without ever getting them. Then, there are those who never as much as looked at an airplane while they were expecting a baby. Want to more about air travel with a baby bump? See flying while pregnant should you?

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