Suffering from Lymphedema
The lymphatic system, which is comprised of the lymphatic vessels, plays a vital role in the body. It helps in getting rid of the body toxins and other waste materials. When the lymphatic vessels are blocked, it can lead to lymphedema of the legs.
Lymphedema results from anything that disrupts the normal flow of the lymph in the body. This can be due to an anatomical abnormality of the lymphatic vessels (common in primary lymphedema) or can be due to trauma that damages the lymphatic vessels (common in secondary lymphedema).
People suffering from lymphedema of the legs usually complain of swelling of the lower extremities, discomfort on the affected site, feeling of “heaviness” and “tightness” on the legs, tingling sensation on the site like pins and needles, limited range of motion, and recurring infection. People with lymphedema are more prone to infection as the skin may thicken and there could also be wart-like growths on the area.
When left unmanaged, lymphedema of the legs can greatly affect one’s quality of life. It can keep a person from doing her usual activities, wear shoes comfortably, or move without feeling any kind of pain.
Reducing the Risk
Lymphedema of the legs can be prevented. Here are some simple ways on how to reduce the risk of lymphedema of the lower extremities:
Keep a healthy weight
Research shows that being overweight can increase one’s risk of lymphedema. You can keep a healthy weight by ensuring a well-balanced meal each day. It also helps to cut back on sodium-rich food as it only contributes to the inflammation.
Take care of your skin
By keeping your skin clean and well-moisturized, you can reduce the chances of having dry skin. Dry skin is more prone to infection which can put a strain on the lymphatic system. Using a mild soap and lotion can help fight skin dryness.
It doesn’t matter whether it’s running, walking, or practicing yoga, the more important thing is that you move your body. Having a regular physical activity can help promote blood and lymph flow.
Wear compression garments
The added pressure provided by these therapeutic garments on the legs boost the flow of the lymph. They can be worn when exercising especially if you’re at higher risk of developing lymphedema.
Bioflect Therapy Garments have a wide range of compression garments that can help improve the lymphedema of the legs. Using a special type of therapy fabric, these garments provide comfortable compression while helping control the swelling.
Image: Steven Depolo