While most people view spider veins as cosmetic concerns rather than a dangerous medical condition, spider veins signal a problem with your vein health.
Spider veins are generally not considered a risky medical issue despite their unsightly appearance. Treatment is needed when these thin lines of red, purple, or blue veins cause discomfort or if their appearance makes you self-conscious.
However, you shouldn’t ignore your spider veins, as they signal a deeper issue with your vein health. Spider veins develop from improper blood circulation, which is worth getting checked by a vein specialist.
What do spider veins mean for your health?
Healthy blood circulation in your legs relies on tiny valves in the veins that open and close to push blood upward. However, various factors, including age, gender, hereditary, and a sedentary lifestyle, can cause these valves to weaken, leading blood to backflow and pool in the lower extremities. As the veins and capillaries near the surface of the skin stretch beyond their usual capacity to hold excess blood, spider veins become noticeable, usually on the legs and feet.
Unlike varicose veins, spider veins are usually flat. While they might not show visible symptoms, many patients have reported aching, burning, or itching sensations.
Even if you think your spider veins are a minor cosmetic concern, you shouldn’t ignore them. Your veins and capillaries are vital to your overall circulation, and a problem with your vein health may signal a more serious underlying problem.
What you can do about spider veins
Medical treatment isn’t necessary until the spider veins cause uncomfortable symptoms or you’re tired of covering up your legs to hide the unattractive red or purple lines. Before you seek treatment, you can try several at-home remedies to make the spider veins less noticeable or painful.
Compression Stockings. Available in most drugstores, compression stockings are made of high-grade elastic that gently squeezes the veins in the calves to promote smoother blood flow.
Move More. Spider vein symptoms worsen when blood pools and the veins cannot pump blood efficiently. Sitting or standing all day slows circulation in the legs. Try to move around as much as possible to boost circulation, even if it’s just flexing your ankles regularly. A simple 30-minute walk each day will also help significantly.
Elevate Your Legs. After a long day of sitting or standing, help your blood flow in the right direction by propping your legs on a pillow for 15 minutes.
Making slight lifestyle adjustments will go a long way in reducing the symptoms and appearance of spider veins. Suppose your spider veins become increasingly painful and itchy, or you just want to get rid of them so you can confidently wear shorts again. In that case, you should consider seeking medical treatment, such as sclerotherapy. An effective and reliable therapy for spider veins, sclerotherapy is a minimally invasive procedure that uses a safe solution to destroy the vein.
While spider veins are not a pressing medical concern, keeping a close eye on your veins for any changes and getting them checked by a specialist is a healthy habit. After all, your overall health depends on your veins pumping blood efficiently!
Take the first step toward better vein health
Center for Vein Restoration (CVR) operates two full-service vein treatment facilities in Salem, New Hampshire, and Nashua, New Hampshire, led by Normand Miller, MD, FACS, RPVI, RVT. As an experienced board-certified vascular surgeon specializing in vascular disease and venous insufficiency, Dr. Miller can expertly examine your veins and guide you through the most appropriate treatment option.
Visit us to learn more or schedule an appointment online!
410 Amherst Street, Suite 200
Nashua, NH 03063
224 Main Street, Suite 1-D
Salem, NH 03079