How to prevent blood clots: Three simple lifestyle tweaks to reduce your risk – NHS advice

AstraZeneca: Sister of blood clot victim urges UK to get jabbed

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Deep vein thrombosis is a medical condition that occurs when a blood clot forms in a deep vein, usually in the leg. There are a number of factors that can increase your risk of blood clots, and certain steps you can take to reduce them if this is the case.

Risk factors include if you are staying in or recently left hospital, especially if you cannot move around much after an operation.

If you are at a high risk of blood clots after having been in hospital follow the advice of your care team about preventing clots.

“This may involve wearing stockings that improve your blood flow or taking medicine to reduce the risk of clot,” according to the NHS.

Other risk factors include if you are overweight or using combined hormonal contraception, such as the combined pill.

If you are pregnant or have just had a baby, your risk is also higher.

Similarly, if you have an inflammatory condition such as Crohn’s disease or rheumatoid arthritis, this can increase your risk of clots.

Being older than 60 increases your risk of deep vein thrombosis, though it can occur at any age.

There are three things you should not do if you are at a higher risk, according to the NHS.

These three things include not sitting for long periods without moving, if you can avoid it.

If you’re sitting for a while, try not to cross your legs, as this can block blood flow.

If you are not able to walk around, you should exercise your lower legs.

Try raising and lowering your heels while keeping your toes on the floor, then raising your toes with your heels on the floor, suggests the Mayo Clinic.

Anything that prevents your blood from flowing or clotting normally can cause a blood clot.

If you are at higher risk you should not drink lots of alcohol as this can make you dehydrated, and more prone to clots.

If you smoke it also increases your risk. Smoking affects blood clotting and circulation, which can increase your risk.

Sometimes, a blood clot in a vein can occur with no apparent underlying risk factor.

People can naturally dissolve blood clots after the internal injury has healed.

However, when clots do not dissolve naturally, they restrict normal blood flow to the heart, turning into a serious medical condition.

Deep vein thrombosis signs may include swelling in the affected leg, or pain which often starts in your calf and can feel like cramping or soreness.

People also report red or discoloured skin on the leg and a feeling of warmth in the affected leg.

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