Get rid of spider veins

spider veinsWhat are they?

Similar to varicose veins, but smaller, spider veins are small blood vessels appearing near the surface of the skin, They are the small, often tangled, groups of tiny blood vessels just under the skin surface that frequently resemble spider webs (hence the name). They are generally red, blue or purple and are clearly visible, usually on the thighs, lower legs (calves, ankles) and sometimes the face. They can cover large areas of skin, but they are a cosmetic problem only, rarely causing physical symptoms.

Causes

Essentially, spider veins result from slow blood flow and weakened walls in the veins – when this happens, blood pools and an enlarged blood vessel forms. The most common causes include exposure to extreme temperature variations, use of oral contraceptives, hormonal issues particularly in women, and ageing. Other causes include extended periods of standing, obesity, pregnancy, hereditary, or an injury which may have weakened the blood vessels.

Prevention

• Avoid wearing high heels and opt for low heels.
• Rest your legs and avoid standing in one place for long periods of time. Wear mild compression or support hose if your job requires you to stand for long periods of time.
• Change your position regularly when standing. Or at the very least, flex your ankles periodically, as this will help pump the blood out of your lower legs.
• Avoid crossing your legs when sitting.
• Exercise regularly – walking, climbing stairs, cycling and swimming are particularly good at keeping your calf muscles in motion which will help to prevent blood pooling in the veins of your lower legs.
• Maintain your ideal body weight; and lose weight if you are over-weight.
• Eliminate junk food from your diet and eat healthily.
• Avoid tight-fitting clothes.


How to get rid of them

While spider veins are not a health risk, nor are they painful, they can be unsightly. If they bother you, there are ways to get rid of them.
Increased circulation to the surface of the skin helps to get rid of spider veins. And again, exercise – especially walking is very helpful.
Another option is sclerotherapy, which involves the injection of various solutions into the blood vessels. This irritates the vein’s lining and the resulting inflammation makes the blood vessel collapse, allowing your body to redirect blood to healthier veins. Other options include going for laser procedures and other non-invasive or minimally invasive treatments. These are considered cosmetic procedures and are not covered by medical aid.

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35 Responses

  1. I wish I could refrain from sitting crossed legged but it’s the only way i feel comfortable. I have seen the results though and wish I had been informed years and years ago. Walking and cutting out junk food is part of my daily routine though :-)

  2. I wish all of mine just went away. Probably ruined my veins when I was till young and now even though I don’t wear heals, have healthy weight and all the other stuff, nothing helps. Seems like it is to late for me :(

  3. It is hard to stay away from the junk food and just as hard to not sit crossed leg, as this is thee only position comfortable for me.

  4. I know it’s the first thing everyone says, but I’ve had spider veins (a lot) at the age of 25 and then I joined the gym and went at least 4 times a week and I think I have like 5 left… and they’re tiny.

  5. Thank u for the advice I have spider veins they can get very painful especially when its hot and I have been standing for a long time. I have tried a lot of things to solve the problem but will try your tips

  6. I don’t even realise when I’m sitting cross legged! Will have to make an effort to avoid it from now on. Thanks for the article

  7. Very interesting article – but it is difficult not to cross your legs when sitting or lying in bed reading. Must learn to not cross my legs.

  8. great article, mine was caused by standing to long every day on my legs.
    I had Sclerotherapy done to both my legs,but unfortunatly after a couple of years they came back again..
    When i had it done left my legs feeling heavy like bricks for 2 days.The results at the end were amazing,but like i said they did come back.Great Article Thank you.

  9. They say its better to cross your ankles than your legs. Locking the ankles does not cut off blood circulation. Very good article. I will start moving more. Do not want to get these things! Exercise seems to be solution to everything. lol.

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