Blood Clots: Causes, Symptoms, & Treatments
A blood clot is a blockage of a healthy vessel that can lead to a variety of problematic situations. This may happen in any blood vessel and must be taken care of immediately. This problem usually affects obese people, but those suffering from other clinical conditions can also cause it and result in a very dangerous situation. If the clot is not cured, it may require surgery or even amputation of a limb. There are many home remedies to reduce blood clots and it’s always beneficial for patients at high risk to use these to stay active and healthy, either as a treatment or a preventative method.
Blood clotting consists of a mass of red blood cells and other components of cells that clump together at the site of injuries and stop the blood flow in the vessel. After being injured, it is important for you to prevent as much blood loss as possible. However, if this injury happens to a healthy blood vessel that is flowing, it may cause a sudden blockage of blood flow. This is called as emboli, which occurs rarely but is often dangerous and can lead to tissue damage and even death.
Blood flow can be blocked at several blood vessel sites and may cause different clinical conditions. The specific sites or arteries are explained below, as well as the related diseased condition to each variety.
Coronary artery blockage causes Coronary Thrombosis
Limb vessel blockage results in Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)
Lung vessel blockage causes a Pulmonary Embolism (PE)
Any other vein that becomes blocked leads to Peripheral Venous Disorder
Causes of Blood Clots
Blood clots may be caused from missing components in the blood system, plaque formation in the arteries (atherosclerosis), genetic factors, smoking, high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, cholesterol, obesity, sickle cell anemia, liver diseases, injury, and old age.
Your risk may be increased after surgery or on long plane rides (in which you sit very still for long periods). However, blood clots can also occur spontaneously.
A blood clot in the lungs is generally caused by a clot forming elsewhere in the body, and then travelling toward the lungs. This is called a pulmonary embolism, and is considered a medical emergence.
Identification, Signs, & Symptoms of Blood Clots
According to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, about 350,000 to 600,000 people in America suffer from blood clotting in the legs or lungs each year; and hundreds of thousands of people die from this condition each year. Some of the symptoms observed in these patients include excessive pain at the site of clot formation, swelling and tenderness, blue-colored bulge, and ulcers. While, in case of pulmonary embolism, you will experience a sudden shortness of breath, pain in your chest, heart palpitations, or are coughing up blood – if any of this happens, you need a to see a doctor immediately. You can also undergo an ultrasound, CT scan, and venography for proper identification of the condition.
Treatments & Home Remedies for Blood Clots
Some of the treatments and home remedies for blood clots include blood thinners, canola oil, mustard oil, safflower oil, bread, beans, cereals, brussels sprouts, asparagus, broccoli, cayenne, vitamin-C, banana, apricot, spinach, raisins, gingko, bilberry, turmeric, ginger, onion, garlic, spinach, pepper, clove, orange juice, and skimmed milk. Furthermore, you should drink plenty of water, avoid smoking, reduce obesity, use heating pads, and decrease your use of alcohol and sleeping pills.
Medical Treatments: Generally, blood thinners or anticoagulant medicines are used to treat blood clots. Other times, a surgery can also be performed in order to treat them.
Canola Oil, Mustard Oil: These oils contain low levels of fat and should be used for cooking purposes, rather than high-fat oils.
Bread, Beans, Cereals, Sprouts, Brussels sprouts and Asparagus: These are all rich in folate content which has certain metabolic and enzymatic properties which make brittle arteries more flexible.
Broccoli: Broccoli is rich in fiber and is considered good for patients suffering from vascular disorders.
Cayenne (capsicum) and Pepper: Both of these help in preventing platelets from sticking together.
Vitamin C: This powerful vitamin is an antioxidant and actively works to maintain proper vascular health.
Banana, Apricot, Spinach, Orange Juice: All of these keeps the vascular system active and maintain proper blood pressure.
Lean Beef: Intake of lean beef may also help in lowering blood pressure and reduce risk of cardiovascular diseases.
Skim Milk: Skim milk contains the calcium needed for platelet functioning but it must be of the skimmed variety as fat deposits on the walls of blood vessels, thereby thinning their diameter.
Avoid Obesity: Obesity is caused due to a high-fat diet, which results in the deposition of fat on the walls of blood vessels. This leads to a reduction in the diameter, increasing the chances of clots and associated health concerns like atherosclerosis, heart attacks, and strokes.
Walking: Physical activity of all kinds is important, because constant activity keeps blood flowing through various body parts, keeping the vessels clear.
Gingko: Gingko reduces fibrin content, a protein that is important in forming blood clots.
Bilberry, Turmeric, Ginger: Bilberry, turmeric and ginger reduce the phenomenon of platelets becoming clumped, which leads to blood clot formation.
Regular Exercise: Regular exercise must be done as it is very important for patients to keep the blood flowing through all vessels continuously.
Avoid Smoking: Smoking results in the replacement of oxygen by carbon monoxide to the already starved muscles surrounding the veins. Therefore it complicates the situation of blood clotting; smoking should always be avoided.
Onion and Garlic: Onions and garlic also reduce the fibrin content of the body and reduce the clumping of platelets.
Hydrotherapy: Applying hot and cold packs alternatively at the site of pain results in a continuous flow of blood at the site of the blood clot, helping to break it down before it can do any more harm.
Massage: Massage stimulates blood flow to the specific part of the body being massaged, thereby reducing the chances of blood clots at that spot.
Spinach, Pepper, Garlic and Clove: Spinach leaves and one bulb each of pepper, garlic and cloves are put together to extract the juice and then mixed well. This concoction can then be drunk by the patient to enjoy the health benefits.
According to the High Blood Pressure Connection, one must drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration and you should also avoid alcohol and sleeping pills because they cause immobility, thereby raising the risk of blood flow blockage. Regular checkups with a medical professional are also recommended so you can check on your blood pressure and cholesterol levels to make sure they are within the normal, healthy range.
What does a blood clot feel like?
If you have a blood clot, you may not feel anything at all – so if you suspect you may have a blood clot, it’s important to talk to your doctor as soon as possible. A common blood clot is one that occurs in the veins of the leg – you may feel pain, or notice redness or swelling.
How do you know if you have a blood clot?
Sometimes there are no symptoms of a blood clot. They most commonly occur in legs; these can be dangerous if some of it breaks off and moves to your lungs or heart. If there is a blood clot in your leg, you might notice swelling, pain or redness. If you do, you should contact your doctor as soon as possible.