One mom writes in "I used Horse Chestnut and Butcher's broom during my 3rd pregnancy when my varicosities (vaginal and upper thigh) were really bad. The combination provided a great deal of relief; although, they did not get rid of them altogether." For a more exhaustive list of recommendations:
Eat foods rich in Vitamins A, C, E, and B complex: citrus fruits, rose hips, dark green leafy vegetables, cherries, alfalfa sprouts, strawberries, cantaloupe, broccoli, tomatoes, green peppers, lemons, grapes, plums, beets, black currants, sunflower seeds, apricots, black berries, okra, raw onions, garlic buckwheat, oats, and wheat germ
400-800 units of Vitamin E daily may be helpful. Dosage should be decreased to 400 units by the 7th month to avoid retained placenta. Take Vitamin E separately from other vitamins and with milk or cheese for best absorption.
Vitamin C with bioflavinoids (at least 500 mg) and Rutin (a bioflavonoid 100 mg)
**Do not take rutin tablets in the first trimester**
Avoid spices, especially cayenne, black pepper, hot sauces, and curries.
Herbal and Homeopathic Recommendations
• Nettle infusion or Oak straw tea or infusion drink one or two cups daily
• Hawthorne Berry extract (1/4 tsp 2 to 3 time daily)
• Avoid internal use of aloe vera products, and tea of yellow or white sweet clover.
• Prepare an infusion or fresh poultice of comfrey, yarrow, or mullein leaves and apply as a compress to ease achiness and tighten veins.
• Wash varicosities with oak bark infusion or apple cider vinegar to sooth pain.
• Homepathic remedy, Hammamelis 6X, which is usually taken 3x daily up to a week.
• Calcarea fluorica 6X
• For external application, 1 tablespoon of arnica tincture to a liter of cold water and applying it twice daily to affected areas, using a saturated washcloth.
Herbal baths relieve both varicose veins and hemorrhoids effectively. Just add 4 ounces of witch hazel and 2 ounces of comfrey root to 4 pints of water and let it set for 8 hours. Then strain the residue and pour into a hot bath. Sit in the solution for fifteen minutes twice daily.
Varicose Vein Remedies (including Hemorroids) for Pregnant MommasShare
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Varicose Veins (including Hemorroids)
Lifestyle recommendations for varicosities in the legs and vulva:
• Avoid constrictive clothing
• Avoid heavy lifting
• Use support hose, ace bandages, or elastic stockings; should be put on after elevation of the legs and before rising
• Rest periods with legs elevated, above the heart level, periodically throughout the day for 10-15 minutes at a time
• Sit whenever possible, preferably with legs elevated, rather than standing for prolonged period. Keeping the legs uncrossed when sitting
• Moist towels applied daily (five min. with hot towels alternating with 1 min. of cold towels)
• Exercise 30 minutes daily, walking, swimming or stationery bike.
• *For info on relieving constipation that contributes to hemorrhoids, see next page
Constipation and Hemorrhoids in Pregnancy
Constipation often occurs during pregnancy. This is due to the relaxing effect of hormones on the smooth muscles. Often straining to have a bowel movement can lead to hemorrhoids.
• **Increase fluids 8-12 eight ounce glasses per day (no carbonated beverages). Drink a glass of cold water, followed by a glass of warm water devotedly each morning and night.
• Try to go to the bathroom the same time every day especially when your body
• Increase Exercise and take brisk walks twice a day until your hearts pounds
• Increase intake of fresh fruits and vegetables, beans, nuts and seeds, and whole grains
• Prunes, dried figs and apricots, rhubarb, apples, raisins, molasses, honey and sesame seeds all have a mild laxative effect
• feels the need to go and don't rush.
• Do not strain this can encourage hemorrhoids
• Place a small stool under your feet
• Decrease cheese and high fat foods
• Do not use synthetic laxatives!
• Eat yogurt, garlic, onions and leeks
• Eat green foods like Amaranth, Lamb's Quarter, and Violet leaves
Herbs that can be added to the diet:
• Slippery Elm
• Flax seed
• Yellow Dock
• Dandelion Root
• Licorice Root (if no BP problems)
• Psyllium seeds (must drink plenty of water with these)
• Floridex Iron 2 times a day with 250 mg of Vitamin C with each dose
• 1 tablespoon of liquid Chlorophyll daily with 250 mg of Vitamin C
Soak 4 dried prunes or dried black mission figs and 1 tbls. of bran flakes in 1/2 cup of warm apple juice Drink each morning before breakfast.
Mild Laxative blender drink:
2 cups pineapple juice
1/2 cup yogurt 1/2 banana
1/4 cup Aloe Vera juice 1tsp. Slippery Elm Bark 1 tsp. Psyllium seed husks
Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth
Hemorrhoids are varicose veins that occur in and around the rectum and anal canal. Avoid constipation. Try not to sit for long periods of time. Regular exercise, pelvic rocks and lots of fluids are a must. For hemorrhoids that are especially problematic, consult wih a local naturopath to have herbaluppositories prepared for localized healing.
Witch Hazel compresses can help reduce swelling as well as Comfrey/St. John's Wort poultices on the area for one hour.
Others have reported success using cabbage leaves as a compress, or shredded potato.
"Holistic Midwifery, Vol. 1", Anne Frye
Birthing Hands of DC
"I’ve used rutin for years myself when pregnant and non-pregnant and for my pregnant ladies. I found one brand (I think it is Soloray) that comes in 250mg tablets. I have the ladies break them in half and take half in the morning and half at night. It strengthens the walls of veins and arteries, so helps with varicose veins. When taken regularly, the pain from varicose veins goes away and the veins do not get worse. I have even seen them improve in pregnancy (they did for me in one pregnancy). The cases where veins improved the ladies were also walking regularly. The warnings against it are because in “large doses” it can cause contractions/ miscarriage. I’ve never been able to find out what was meant by “large doses”. I’ve always used the 250mg, divided, because it was the lowest dose I could find and seemed to work at that level. I’m pretty sure 500mg, divided, would be safe. I’d love to know if anyone has more detailed information about how much is a “large dose”."