7 Tips for Traveling with Varicose Veins

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If there’s one positive thing that COVID-19 has done, it’s bringing back the road trip.

With so much travel shut down, and the safety of air travel in question, road trips are back in style.

While road trips are a much safer alternative to flying right now, they can be hard on those who suffer from varicose veins. Vein issues should not keep you from enjoying an adventure in your car, but in order to make sure your trip goes smoothly, there are some things you’ll want to do.

Read on for road trip tips to keep your vein issues at bay while you travel.

Tips to Keep Your Legs Healthy While Traveling

Sitting or standing for long periods of time can wreak havoc on your veins, and if you suffer from varicose veins, this becomes even more true. It’s no secret that a road trip requires some time sitting, so it is important to be smart about how you road trip with varicose veins.

Pull over for a break

Stopping every hour or so to get out of the car and walk around is something you want to allow time for on your road trip. Sitting for too long can cut off your circulation and cause issues with your veins. By walking around, you get the blood flowing again and help the veins to properly do their job.

Foot flexing

While you’re in the car you can also work to keep your veins healthy by flexing your feet. To do this, simply pull your toes back towards your body, hold for 10 seconds, then point your feet down for 10 seconds. Do this with each foot a number of times to keep your leg muscles engaged (which are crucial in keeping your blood flowing properly).


Staying hydrated while on your road trip will help to keep your muscles hydrated, which helps your veins to do their job. In addition, the more water you drink, the more you will have to stop for a restroom break which means more opportunity for you to get up and walk.

Wear compression stockings

When sitting for a long period of time (as often happens while traveling), swelling is likely to occur. In order to keep swelling down and keep the blood properly flowing through your legs, buying a pair of compression stockings and wearing them during your road trip is highly recommended. In fact, you should wear them for the entire time you are in the car, until you go to sleep.

Wear loose clothing

It is important to not wear any clothes that have the potential to restrict your blood flow. To be safe, loose is better so find some comfortable, baggy clothes to wear during your road trip that will allow your circulation to properly function.

Avoid sleep aids

As much as you may want to catch some zzzs on your road trip (if you’re a passenger, of course!), we suggest you keep away from these. Sleep aids will make it less likely that you will be awake to take advantage of stops and exercises while in the car, since you will be busy sleeping. If you need to take a nap, that’s fine, just do it naturally so you can get up and walk around when your driver makes a stop.

Deep breathing

Surprisingly, deep breaths can help with your circulation. Now don’t count on this as a substitute for any of the other road trip tips, but this in conjunction with the others will help your veins stay healthy. The deep breaths help to encourage blood flow to your chest where it is then pumped through the rest of your body.

Before you head out on your road trip, meet with a vein specialist to make sure it is safe for you to be on the road, and to discuss any special things you may need to do while traveling.
Schedule your consultation today

If you find yourself suffering from varicose vein issues while on your road trip, look for a Vein Clinics of America location near you. With over 60 clinics in 15 states, you may find yourself in close proximity to one that can help you alleviate some of your vein issues until you are back home.

Concerned about your vein health?

Medically Reviewed by

Dr. Satish Vayuvegula
Dr. Satish Vayuvegula is the National Medical Director at Vein Clinics of America. Certified by the American Board of Venous & Lymphatic Medicine, Dr. Satish Vayuvegula is recognized as a physician who has met rigorous standards of knowledge and extensive training in phlebology, the diagnosis and treatment of varicose vein disease and related disorders. Dr. Satish also shares his passion and expertise by serving as a board member of the American Vein and Lymphatic Society, the predominant national organization for venous and lymphatic disease.

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