Easy Steps to Prevent Spider Veins

Spider veins, which are smaller than varicose veins and found closer to the skin’s surface, most commonly occur on the legs and face; while red or blue in color, their similar pattern to that of a spider’s web explains their name. When covering a small area of skin spider veins are usually of little consequence, but if over a wider area these ugly leg veins can cause someone to become self-conscious; in a minority of cases they can also cause painful symptoms and can be a sign of underlying varicose veins. If you have a family history of these unsightly veins, you are more likely to develop them yourself, however, genetics aren’t the only risk factor. Here we take a look at the steps you can take to prevent the development of these abnormal leg veins, though further tailored advice can be provided at an appointment with Dr. John Tan at the Vein Clinic.

Tips during pregnancy

Pregnancy is one of the most common times during which spider veins develop. In part this relates to the hormonal changes that occur, but also while a woman is pregnant, there is an increase in blood volume, which makes the veins enlarge. Although tiredness is a common problem during pregnancy, avoid long periods of time sat down and when you are sat, ensure that your legs are raised; this helps improve blood flow. Regular exercise helps to promote a healthy circulation during pregnancy and will also prevent excessive weight gain, which otherwise can make ugly leg veins more likely. A high fiber diet during pregnancy prevents constipation, which is itself known to cause veins in the legs to swell. These same steps help to prevent varicose veins, which are also more likely when pregnant; this is beneficial as these abnormal veins increase the risk of deep vein thrombosis, which is already increased during pregnancy.

Whether pregnant or not, follow these additional tips:

Be careful in the sun
Sun exposure increases the likelihood of spider veins on the cheeks and nose. Sunscreen helps to protect the skin on the face so that abnormal veins are less likely to develop.

Avoid prolonged standing
When stood for long periods your veins need to work harder, so if this is unavoidable, alternate your weight between your legs every five minutes to minimize the impact.

Wear compression stockings
These improve blood flow through the legs.

Choose low heeled shoes
Shoes with a high heel restrict blood flow, while those with a lower heel tone the calf muscle and improve the circulation.

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March 4, 2014

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