Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) occurs when a clot forms in the”deep veins” of the human body, especially the legs. DVT is severe, and the complications can be deadly. While there are a significant number of risk factors for developing DVT, there are also things you can do to help prevent it.
Obesity, inactivity, and specific hobbies can increase the chance of developing DVT. If you’re worried about DVT, losing some extra weight may save your life. A diet high in fiber but low in fat is great for DVT prevention. If your work requires long hours or your hobbies are generally sedentary, get out there and take a walk around the block to get your blood pumping. Even if you aren’t sitting all of the time, stretching your legs during long flights or drives will improve flow. In case you have a combination of risk factors, this is particularly important.
Stronger, healthier veins imply less of an opportunity for DVT to form. Smoking changes your flow and the way your blood clots, so toss out that pack of smokes. You might also have to cut back on alcohol and coffee, which can in fact purify your system and decrease the odds of a clot.
Unfortunately, having family members who developed DVT or a pulmonary embolism means you are likely to develop it yourself. Additionally, some individuals have clotting disorders, such as Factor V Leiden, where the blood is too thick or clots too easily. If you think you have any of these, talk with your doctor about your choices. You might require a blood thinner. Avoid wearing tight socks, and check out compression stockings. They will promote blood circulation and help with swelling.
Your age also affects your likeliness of developing DVT. Once you pass 40, your odds of developing this type of clot is likely, as the veins tend to become weak with age. Keep an eye on your blood pressure, and understand the symptoms of both DVT and pulmonary embolism, as DVT doesn’t necessarily have symptoms.
Recovering from Illness
While you have the illness or after surgery, you might be restricted to a bed for long stretches of time. Sadly, DVT is most likely to happen when you’re the least able to do anything about it. Keep your feet elevated, do little exercises (particularly if your doctor recommends this). Get out of bed as soon as you can get a green light from your doctor.
Special Concerns for Women
Women should be cautious when using birth control or hormone replacement therapy, in addition to during pregnancy since certain hormone levels make them more likely to develop DVT. Continue moving throughout your pregnancy. If you are restricted to bed rest, stretch your legs as much as your doctor will allow. Let your doctor know if your family history contains clotting disorders or DVT, so he or she is able to be extra cautious.