Spider veins are small enlarged superficial blood vessels that appear red or blue. They commonly occur on the legs, but frequently occur on the face or elsewhere. Larger dilated blood vessels called varicose veins may be raised above the skin surface. They may occur along with spider veins.
Varicose Veins: Ways To Treat These Painful Veins
Varicose veins are twisted, enlarged veins. Although technically any vein in your body has the potential to become varicose, the veins that are most commonly affected are those in your legs and feet. This is because standing and walking throughout the course of the day increases the pressure in the veins of your lower body putting them under higher levels of stress and making them more likely to fail.
Varicose veins vary in their severity. Some varicose veins are a problem only because they are unsightly and people have a cosmetic concern attached to self esteem and embarrassment. However, for some unlucky other people, varicose veins can cause aching, pain, and general discomfort. Worse even, in some rare occasions varicose veins can lead to more serious potentially health threatening problems. You should also be aware that varicose veins may sometimes be a signal of a higher risk of other circulatory problems. For this reason if you have varicose veins you should visit a doctor to determine the correct care measures that you should be taking. Treatment may involve anything from minor self care measures to involved procedures performed by your doctor to close or remove veins.
Self care options, such as exercise, keeping your leg elevated whenever possible or wearing compression stockings can help minimize the appearance of varicose veins and ease the pain associated with these engorged veins. These practices may even prevent your varicose veins from getting worse. However, if you are concerned about the way that your varicose veins look and these self care measures have failed to improve or at least stopped your condition from getting worse, the next step you should take is to see your doctor.
Causes of varicose veins can include many factors; the following are the most common. Age is the number one culprit of varicose veins. As you grow older, your veins will begin to lose elasticity which results in them beginning to stretch. Alternatively the biologic valves in your veins can grow weak, which in some cases may be allowing the blood that should be moving toward your heart to flow backward. This process can result in blood pooling in your veins, which will make your veins enlarge and become varicose. This explains why the veins appear blue, because they contain deoxygenated blood, which should be on its way back to the process of being recirculated through the lungs.
Pregnancy is another major source of varicose veins. Some pregnant women develop varicose veins while others do not and this can be attributed to genetics and lifestyle more than anything else. Pregnancy naturally increases the volume of blood in a woman’s body, but actually decreases the flow of blood from their legs to their pelvis. This circulatory change is intended to support the growth of the fetus, but it can often produce an unwanted side effect that is the enlargement veins in your legs. Varicose veins may either surface for the very first time or simply may worsen during the late stages of pregnancy.