Have you ever noticed the occurrence of the branch- or web-shaped small veins on your legs or facial area? These veins are known as spider veins. These red, purple, or blue veins are not painful or dangerous. However, you may want to get rid of them to improve your body aesthetics.
This article briefly describes the causes and treatment of spider veins.
What Causes Spider Veins?
Spider veins appear in the legs when valves of the veins lose their functionality. The primary function of veins is to carry blood to the heart. These veins contain a one-way valve that prevents the backward flow of the blood.
Sometimes, this valve becomes weak or damaged, causing the blood to pool inside the vein. Over time, this continuous accumulation of blood causes a bulge. This bulge branches out due to the pressure of the blood flow, forming spider veins.
Similarly, these veins occur on the face due to the tearing of tiny blood vessels. The primary cause of this occurrence is sun damage or higher blood pressure.
What are the risk factors?
A few factors that may increase the risk of spider vein development are as follows:
- Genetics – According to a study, about 90% of people with spider veins develop this issue due to genetics.
- Pregnancy – Weight of the fetus and increased blood pressure causes pressure on the veins in the legs. Some pregnant women develop temporary spider veins, but these veins can also be permanent.
- Being overweight – Pressure on the leg veins becomes significant if you are overweight.
- Being older – Calf muscles support veins that pump the blood upward. With aging, these muscles lose strength. As a result, the blood pumping job becomes hard for veins.
- Sitting or standing for longer durations – Your veins will have hard work pumping the blood to the heart if you remain in the same posture for multiple hours.
- Hormones – Hormonal treatments for menopause issues can result in estrogen release, which can weaken vein valves. As a result, the risk of developing spider veins increases.
How to Treat Spider Veins?
Spider veins are treatable through several treatment options, including home-based treatments, medications, and in-office procedures. However, the most popular treatments are sclerotherapy and laser therapy. So, let’s have a quick overview of both these treatments.
During this treatment, the surgeon injects an irritant into a spider vein. The irritation in the vein causes its walls to stick together, blocking the flow of blood. As a result, the swelling decreases, and the vein shrinks. Eventually, the appearance of the spider vein improves. Nonetheless, you may need to undergo several treatments sessions to achieve the desired results.
After undergoing sclerotherapy, you may have to wear stockings for a few days. Overall, spider veins may take six weeks to disappear after this treatment.
Laser treatment becomes a more viable option if spider veins are close to the skin surface and shorter than three millimeters. The laser beam targets a spider vein accurately and causes it to clot. That vein dries up eventually.
On the whole, laser treatments are significantly less invasive compared to sclerotherapy.
Although spider veins look scary, they are harmless and painless. Undergoing any treatment to get these veins removed will be for cosmetic purposes only. Therefore, you will want to go for the treatment option with zero downtime. Both sclerotherapy and laser treatment are minimally invasive procedures to treat spider veins.
Speak to a skilled dermatologist if you have spider veins and you want to undergo an in-office procedure to remove those veins. You can visit the Laser Skin Care Clinic and book a consultation.