It’s estimated that as many as 60% of adults have varicose veins or spider veins. Despite their prevalence, many people don’t know much about them or how to prevent spider veins. In fact, there are several varicose and spider veins causes. Some of these factors are genetic and others are heavily influenced by your lifestyle.
Before I get to the latter, let’s look at some of the root causes of spider veins that can’t be helped: genetics, hormonal influences, and history of blood clots.
Unfortunately, heredity plays a huge part in the likelihood of spider veins. Like most genetic traits, if both your parents suffer from varicose or spider veins, the odds of you getting them increase tremendously.
Additionally, hormones and blood clots play a role the development of spider veins. Periods of hormonal change (including pregnancy and menopause) increase the chance of developing spider veins. But instead of focusing on these elements that are outside of our control, let’s look at some spider vein causes that we can influence.
Some factors that lead to spider veins and varicose veins can be controlled. By focusing on factors over which we have agency, you can make minor lifestyle changes that could have a big influence.
There are several occupations that increase the likelihood of spider veins. These professions generally require prolonged standing or sitting such as office workers, nurses, factory workers, cashiers, and hairstylists.
If your job requires long stretches of standing or sitting, be proactive and find ways to get moving throughout the day. If you work in an office, taking a short walk every 15-30 minutes is a great way to get your blood pumping again. Likewise, if you spend all day on your feet, find ways to walk, sit, and stay moving.
Being overweight can lead to several health problems, including vascular diseases like spider veins. While not the sole cause of the disease, obesity creates medical complications.
Getting rid of spider veins starts with the accurate diagnosis and treatment of the underlying cause, which is often venous insufficiency. After the incompetent veins that lead to the spider veins are treated, direct treatment of the unsightly spider veins is much more effective.
If you are a runner and begin noticing spider or varicose veins keep an eye on the symptoms. If they become worse, consult your physician. Running on softer surfaces and wearing compression stockings both help combat spider veins.
Another contributing spider veins cause is hormonal changes. For women, this includes puberty, pregnancy, and menopause. Likewise, the long-term use of high estrogen birth control pills may be contributing fact in developing vascular disease.
If you are taking birth control and begin developing spider veins talk to your doctor.
There is no single cause that lead to spider veins, but be aware of your risk factors and take steps to mitigate them whenever possible. You can work in small changes to your day like taking breaks to stretch at work or taking up a new exercise regimen, to help prevent spider veins.
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