We can’t blame you for trying a few home remedies to cure your spider veins, such as ginger tea, massage, and exercise but the unfortunate truth is that visible veins aren’t something you can fix at home.
In this article, we’re going to talk about the causes of spiders veins, how they’re different from varicose veins, and how they can be treated. So, let’s start by discussing what spiders veins are.
What are spider veins exactly?
Spider veins are small visible veins that appear on the surface of the legs and sometimes the face. They can be blue, red, or purple and look like a spider’s web (hence the name), thin lines, or branches.
Varicose veins, on the other hand, are larger veins that are located deeper into the body. Rather than being identified by discoloration, varicose veins are more easily identified as they stretch out and bulge.
That said, the two are intricately linked and most people who suffer from varicose veins nearly always have spider veins as well.
Why do visible veins happen?
Spider veins in the legs are caused by valves in the veins not working properly.
Blood is pumped to the whole of your body via blood vessels. The blood circulates outward through the arteries towards your legs, arms, and head and inward through your veins to your heart.
When everything is working correctly, the blood shoots upwards and the valve closes once the blood has passed through. If the valve weakens or is damaged, the blood struggles to flow upwards and falls back, causing it to pool inside the veins of the leg. Over time, this may result in a bulge in the vein that branches out, eventually causing spider veins.
Spider veins and varicose veins are both symptoms of a condition called venous insufficiency. Both conditions are caused by weakened or damaged vein valves.
What are the underlying causes of venous insufficiency?
There are various reasons for vein issues – some of which can be reversed and others that can’t.
Factors that increase your chance of developing spider veins include:
- Being female – Spider veins appear to affect women more often than men
- Genetics – Almost 90% of people suffering from spiders veins have a family history of them and you have no control over this
- Being older – With age, valves in the veins often become weaker. The calf muscles that provide support for the veins and help them pump blood upwards, may also lose some of their strength as a person gets older.
- Obesity – Extra body weight can put more pressure on leg veins
- Sitting or standing for long periods – When a person remains in the same position for a long time, the veins have to work harder to pump the blood towards the heart
- Hormones – Because estrogen can weaken vein valves, women using birth control pills or undergoing hormone therapy for the menopause, are at increased risk of developing spider veins
- Previous vein damage or blood clot – This can damage the valves causing them not to work properly
- Sun damage – UV light from the sun can damage the skin and cause spiders veins or broken veins, particularly on the face
- Excessive pressure on the face- This may be due to forceful sneezing, coughing, or vomiting
How can spider veins be treated?
The prime objective of spider vein treatment is to seal off the valve so that it collapses and stops the blood flow completely. Don’t worry, spider veins are only superficial, and another vein can easily take over the circulation.
We provide a couple of comfortable state-of-the-art treatments that will over time shrink spider veins to leave you with clear, blemish-free skin. These include:Sclerotherapy – this involves injecting a concentrated saltwater lotion into the affected vein. This irritates the walls of the blood vessels and causes scar tissue to form, effectively closing up the blood vessel.
Vena Ablation – This uses targeted laser heat to close the vein and is a quick and easy procedure
Here at the Midwest Institute for Non-Surgical Treatment (MINT), we specialize in treating patients with spider veins and varicose veins. Dr. Akinwande is a highly- skilled physician who specializes in non-surgical endovascular procedures.
Don’t suffer from spider veins and varicose veins problems! Instead, come and talk to Dr. Akinwande and the team who can treat you at one of four convenient locations throughout the St Louis area. Book an appointment today to schedule a consultation and take the first steps towards getting your life and health back on track.