Have Spider Veins? How You Can Prevent And Treat This Issue

A lot of women dislike the appearance of spider veins on their legs, as the bluish, purplish, or reddish vessels are close to the surface and can be easily seen. While people have their spider veins removed for cosmetic reasons, spider veins can worsen over time and lead to uncomfortable symptoms, like swelling, aching, and burning sensations. Read on to learn more about spider veins, how you can prevent them from forming, and how you can treat them.

Are Spider Veins the Same as Varicose Veins?

The terms spider vein and varicose vein are often used interchangeably, but there are some slight differences. Both relate to irregular dilated blood vessels, but varicose veins typically are more painful and more palpable. Varicose veins are twisted and swollen, but spider veins may not be twisted or raised on the skin.

However, varicose veins are very common. About 20 to 25 million people in the U.S. have this issue—most of them women. So if you have spider veins, they could very well develop into varicose veins if they aren't taken care of.

Can You Stop Spider Veins from Forming?

Unfortunately, some spider veins are just caused by genetics. Some spider veins are caused by hormone fluctuations, like in pregnancy. Many women going through menopause tend to develop spider veins.

While you can't do much about genetics and natural hormone fluctuations, there are some things you can do to stop spider veins in their tracks. Spider veins are often caused when a person is overweight, obese, or sedentary. If you make an effort to lose the extra weight or improve your activity, you could lessen the appearance of spider veins and improve circulation, thus diminishing any symptoms you might have.

Take a look at your wardrobe as well. Believe it or not, clothing like skinny jeans or high heels can affect your circulation and cause spider veins to form. Try to rotate your shoes and cut back on the high heels, and make sure that you aren't sitting for long periods of time if you are going to be wearing tight-fitting pants.

How Can You Get Rid of Spider Veins?

Thankfully, there are many pain-free surgical options at your disposal. For instance, cryo-sclerotherapy is a great pain-free spider vein treatment. During cryo-sclerotherapy, your doctor will inject your veins with a very cold solution that will cause the vein to scar, close off, and fade.

In the past, you would have needed more injections, but cryo-sclerotherapy doesn't need as many injections to remove the veins. Plus, because the veins are injected with a very cold solution, this helps to reduce pain and swelling during healing.

After the procedure, you may have some minor bruising, but this should go away in a few weeks. Some people may just need one visit, but others may need about two or three to get rid of all of their veins.

Another good option that is noninvasive is laser vein treatment. During this procedure, your doctor will pass a laser over the different spider veins. The light from the laser will be attracted to the specific pigments of the veins, and the heat from the laser will cauterize the vein's blood supply.

Like cryo-sclerotherapy, the vein will close off and then be absorbed back into the body. Again, you may need multiple appointments if you have a lot of veins to take care of.

Keep in mind that if you gain weight, have hormone fluctuations, etc., then new veins can appear. But both of these procedures should completely eliminate your current spider veins! For more information on spider vein treatments, contact a doctor in your area that specializes in cosmetic procedures.