Spider veins, also called thread veins, are the small blood vessels that become visible beneath the surface of the skin. Often blue or red in color, spider veins may either protrude from or be flat under the skin.
Spider veins often branch out from a central location, rather like the legs of a spider, hence the name. While they do not usually pose a risk to health, they can be unsightly and make people feel self-conscious. So, let’s take a closer look at spider veins, and the treatment options available.
What Causes Spider Veins?
There are many reasons why spider veins appear on the body. This includes:
- Age – This is one of the most common reasons for spider veins. As we age, the elasticity of blood vessels becomes weaker. This makes them more prone to dilation, contributing to the appearance of spider veins.
- Genetics – If your parents or grandparents have spider veins, you may also be more likely to develop them due to familial genetics.
- Hormonal Changes – Spider veins are more likely to develop during times of hormonal fluctuations, such as puberty, pregnancy and perimenopause.
- Activities – If you have a job or take part in activities that require long periods of standing or sitting, it can increase the risks of spider veins developing.
- Sun Exposure – The sun’s UV rays can contribute to the appearance of spider veins. This is especially true for veins that develop on the face.
How to Prevent Spider Veins
While it is not always possible to prevent spider veins, there are some lifestyle choices you can make to minimize their progression. This includes getting regular exercise to maintain good blood flow throughout the body, avoiding long periods of sitting or standing, and protecting skin with good-quality sunscreen.
Some people may experience discomfort from spider veins, such as mild pain and throbbing. In this case, compression garments may be helpful.
Whether it is for cosmetic reasons or for pain, seeking treatment for spider veins can give you back your quality of life and your confidence.
Treatment Options for Spider Veins
Thankfully, there are a range of procedures that can both reduce the appearance and undesirable effects of spider veins. This includes:
Sclerotherapy – A qualified professional injects a solution into the problem veins, which encourages them to collapse. Over time, the veins will start to fade, significantly reducing their unsightly appearance. This form of treatment is highly effective and safe for patients with no history of blood clots.
Laser Therapy – A laser light is applied to the target veins. This helps to break down their pigmentation and encourages their gradual disappearance.
Photo-Rejuvenation – This type of treatment works on many skin discoloration problems, such as spider veins, redness, scars, and sun damage.
Consulting Healthcare Professionals for Spider Vein Treatment
As with any cosmetic treatment, it is essential to use a qualified and experienced practitioner. This not only ensures therapy is done in a safe manner, but it also means you will get the best results.