The tricky thing about blood clots is they get in the way of the normal circulation in your body and that can be very dangerous. Here are some basic blood clot facts to keep you a step ahead of the problem.
Signs of Blood Clots
Deep vein thrombosis is a blood clot that usually occurs in the leg. It can cause pain and swelling in the affected area and could also be red and warm to the touch. The most serious complication from a blood clot is pulmonary embolism. A blockage that occurs when a blood clot breaks off and gets lodged in the lungs. If you have a pulmonary embolism you may experience shortness of breath and chest pain.
Risk Factors and ways To Avoid DVTAnyone can be affected by a blood clot. Surgery or injury can certainly increase your risk of getting a blood clot.
Ways you can avoid DVT:
- If you are on a long flight or are in the habit of sitting for long hours, get up and take short frequent walks. Perform leg exercises while sitting at your desk to get your circulation pumping.
- Quit smoking, exercise and maintain a healthy diet.
- When hospitalized ask your doctor for blood clot preventative measures.
Blood Thinners and Diet
Blood thinners are the most common form of treatment for a blood clot. Warfarin being the most popular brand and has been used for decades. Doctors need to perform frequent blood tests however to monitor the dosage.
Vitamin K found in some foods can interfere with the blood thinner. When on the drug you should only eat certain foods. Talk to your doctor about which foods are best to avoid.
Avoid eating or drinking anything with cranberry in it, it can intensify the drugs effects so avoiding it is best.
Pros and Cons to Medication
Blood thinners such as apixaban, dabigatran and rivaroxaban are new forms that can be used to prevent blood clots. They don’t require frequent testing which allows for more convenience.
There could be some negative drawbacks however to a new drug when it comes to mixing it with food and other drugs. They can also be more expensive then the old methods. It’s important to talk to your doctor about the benefits and drawbacks of each drug and get one that suits you best.
High Impact Sports
If you are an athlete or at least a sports enthusiast you should consider avoiding any high impact sports while you are on blood thinners. These types of sports can cause you to bleed heavily when exercising. You could also get recurring blood clots and should be aware of the symptoms so you recognize if it happens again. Leg pain, swelling, chest pain, shortness of breath and deep breathing are all signs that you could have a problem.