Those who suffer from the discomfort of varicose veins have no doubt looked for an alternative treatment to surgery. A popular non-medical choice is the use of essential oils. But can essential oils treat varicose veins? Well, the underlying cause of varicose veins is faulty valves which don’t sufficiently push the blood from your legs to your heart. The lack of circulation causes blood to pool, which in turn, causes veins to bulge and protrude against the skin. As your legs are furthest from your heart, varicose veins are most prominent there.
Unfortunately, essential oils won’t fix the valves in your veins and cure varicose veins however they do possess healing properties that ease the symptoms.
Are varicose veins serious?
Apart from the physical symptoms, which can impede daily life, some varicose veins could lead to other health issues. Advanced or severe varicose veins can lead to blood leaking into the tissue and skin. This can cause painful swelling, inflammation and discolouration.
Another complication that can occur is the hardening of the leg tissue, a condition known as Lipodermosclerosis. In extremely rare cases, untreated varicose veins can lead to the formation of potentially dangerous deep vein thrombosis or blood clots. Every case is different so it is advised that you discuss your personal circumstances with a doctor.
To read more: when varicose veins become dangerous.
If your varicose veins pose little discomfort and health risk, then treatment may not be necessary. Some patients find varicose veins unsightly, however, and wish to have them addressed for aesthetic reasons.
Without undergoing treatment, you can not get rid of varicose veins. But if you’re not looking to treat your veins in the near future, there are plenty of ways to ease symptoms such as swelling, aching, itching and cramping.
Effective ways to ease symptoms of varicose veins include regular exercise, maintaining a healthy weight, wearing compression stockings and even the use of essential oils.
What do essential oils do?
The use of essential oils is becoming increasingly popular, as they are known for their healing and calming properties. Psychologically, they have an undeniable calming result, so can they do the same for the rest of your body? There are a variety of oils that offer different benefits for varicose veins.
Six common essential oils for varicose veins
Lavender and Frankincense
Lavender oil is best known for its calming effect, but when used in aromatherapy it can reduce pain and inflammation, similar to frankincense, which has anti-inflammatory properties. These oils can assist with the swelling caused by varicose veins, and in turn, relieve the discomfort of swollen legs.
Cypress and Rosemary
Essential oils like cypress and rosemary can ease your symptoms too. Both these oils help with your circulation, encouraging the blood to flow toward your heart. The use of these oils will ease swelling and the heaviness associated with varicose veins.
Geranium and Helichrysum
Other oils, like geranium oil, known for aiding skin conditions and improving circulation, and helichrysum oil, also known to boost circulation and minimising inflammation, have the potential to reduce the appearance of varicose and spider veins. Despite being able to reduce the appearance, these oils cannot prevent the growth of new varicose or spider veins.
Most of the essential oils, used with massage, promote circulation and reduce swelling, further reducing your symptoms of varicose veins. Despite popular opinion, essential oils, along with regular exercise and a healthy lifestyle, will not treat your already developed varicose veins. Being active can reduce the risk of varicose veins, without risking your health, whereas essential oils could present minor risks. As essential oils are not regulated, always be mindful when applying them to your skin.
For more tips: Do natural remedies work for varicose veins?
Seek expert advice
The doctors at The Vein Institute specialise in varicose vein treatment. We offer patients a comprehensive program using non-surgical laser treatment techniques. You can learn more in our Definitive Guide to Varicose Vein Treatment.
The benefits of non-surgical varicose vein treatment are:
- Walk-in walk-out treatment
- 98% success rate
- Extremely effective
- Can be performed at a clinic (no hospitalisation)
- No general anaesthetic
- Medicare rebates apply
- No downtime or time away from work