Whether you’re traveling for a business meeting or to see family for the holidays, airline travel can increase your risk of developing blood clots. Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is of particular concern during this time. DVT is a potentially life-threatening condition that occurs when a blood clot forms in a deep vein, usually in the leg. Clots in your deep veins are especially dangerous since they can break free and travel to your lungs, a cause for major concern.
Studies have asserted that there is a link between airline travel and the development of DVT. So, what can you do to help prevent complications during times of busy travel?
Drink plenty of water
Staying hydrated is an important step in facilitating healthy blood circulation and increasing blood flow throughout your body. When the body become dehydrated, this can cause strain on your heart and the amount of fresh, oxygenated blood flowing through the body decreases.
Walk the aisle whenever the seatbelt sign is off
Take advantage of every opportunity to get up and walk around. Engaging the leg muscles with the low-impact act of walking is a great way to keep fresh blood (and therefore oxygen) flowing throughout your body.
Stretch your feet and legs while sitting
It’s not always possible to pace up and down the aisles, especially on those turbulent flights when it seems the seatbelt light stays ignited the entire time. When you’re unable to stand or walk, moving your feet in circles, pointing your toes up and down repeatedly, and even simply stretching your leg straight are all ways in which you can promote healthy circulation while remaining safely in your seat.
Avoid crossing your legs while sitting
This particular sitting style can cause unnecessary obstacles to the blood pumping through your veins. By crossing your legs, you may be causing “bottleneck” points within your veins, making it so that your body must work harder to pump blood through those areas.
Wear graduated compression stockings
The use of these specially-designed stockings can decrease the risk of developing DVT during travel…not to mention can help make your legs feel good!
Happy traveling! If you are suffering from symptoms such as restlessness, throbbing, or pain in the legs and think you may have a blood clot, call Miller Vein to schedule an appointment to be evaluated.