Your Shoes and Varicose Veins

Your Shoes and Varicose Veins

Most of us have suffered for fashion at some point, but in some cases your wardrobe choices can cause more than just fleeting pain. That perfect pair of shoes might look amazing, but they could contribute to your issues with varicose veins. Changing your footwear could improve your overall vascular health.


Varicose veins are enlarged veins just below the surface of the skin on the legs. When the valves promoting unidirectional flow are damaged, blood pools in the veins. This causes the vein walls to become weak and the veins to swell. The swollen veins can be unsightly and painful. This condition occurs most often in the legs because the veins must work against gravity to pump blood back to the heart.


We all love finding that perfect pair of pumps that makes our legs look fantastic, but this choice of footwear can actually make varicose veins worse. When walking in heels, calf muscle contraction is reduced. This reduction means that more blood stays in the calf muscle instead of being pumped back to the heart through a series of one-way valves. This pooling of blood increases venous blood pressure in the legs and can result in weakened blood vessel valves.


We know you may love your heels, so we’re not suggesting you ditch them altogether – just save them for special occasions or go for a shorter heel. For daily wear, pick a pair of flat or low-heeled shoes that support your foot. This will promote healthy blood circulation. If you’re still concerned, you can purchase shoes for varicose veins that are designed to promote healthy blood flow by toning the calf muscles.

Another important way to prevent varicose veins is to stand up and walk around often while on the job. If your job involves being on your feet all day, try sitting for a few minutes every so often. For healthy blood flow, it’s important to move frequently.


If those remedies aren’t enough, compression socks or stockings can do wonders for those with vein disease. They work by applying pressure to the legs, ensuring that blood continues to circulate and doesn’t pool in the veins.

We want you to love your legs, so if you are dealing with leg pain and/or varicose veins, give Alate Health a call today. We are your Houston vein specialists dedicated to making a difference in the way you feel.