Spider Veins: Treatments and Causes
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If you don’t suffer with ‘spider veins’, you probably know somebody who does. They are blue, purple or red veins which can often resemble thin lines, branches or webs; hence the nickname ‘spider veins’. The medical term for this skin condition is Telangiectasia, but more often than not, the defect is referred to as ‘spider veins’ or ‘thread veins’.
These veins are unlikely to be harmful or painful, but if you do have concerns, it is always worth seeking medical advice. Here at Aesthetics of Liverpool, we are approached with many different skin conditions that our clients are struggling with; from Rosacea to Acne. As spider veins are the most common, we are proud to be able to provide our clients who suffer from Telangiectasia with several treatments which will reduce the appearance of the veins entirely.
For further information on how we can help your skin counteract it’s spider veins, continue reading this blog post. But first, let’s talk about the causes of Telangiectasia.
How Is Telangiectasia Caused?
‘Spider Veins’ are essentially broken blood vessels which become visible when the veins are dilated or enlarged, just beneath the surface of the skin. They form when the valve inside the vein stops working as it should, resulting in a backflow of blood within the vein.
This creates an increase in pressure within the vein, causing the blood vessel wall to become weak. The ‘spider veins’ then develop from the dilation and engorgement of the affected vessels. The threadlike veins tend to appear over a length of time, in small clusters.
How Common Are Spider Veins?
Spider veins can appear at any age, and anywhere on the body. However, we find Telangiectasia to be most common in women aged 40 and over, especially on their cheeks, nose and legs. Spider veins affect up to 88% of women, and 79% of men; it is a prevalent skin condition, but it can be easily be treated.
How Do I Know If I Have Spider Veins?
‘Spider veins’ aren’t likely to cause any pain or irritation, but they can make the sufferer feel self-conscious of them. In some cases, the veins can become very visible by developing a brown discolouration of the skin. Other symptoms can include swelling, throbbing and aching, which are all more likely to occur after a prolonged period of sitting or standing.
Why Do I Have Spider Veins?
Ageing – In our years of experience, we have found that one of the most common causes of Telangiectasia is ageing. As we age, the collagen in our skin begins to break down, causing the skin to become thinner and our veins to appear more visible.
Underlying Illness – It is essential to keep in mind that in some cases, ‘thread veins’ can be a sign concerning an underlying illness. If you have any worries, be sure to check it out with your GP.
Hereditary – The genes your parents gave you can often be a cause of your ‘spider veins’. The more people in your family that have Telangiectasia and the stronger the familial link, the more likely it is you will get it, too.
Pregnancy – Skin changes are widespread in pregnancy and often return back to normal after delivery. However, ‘spider veins’ can also be as a result of the increase in estrogen hormones.
Trauma – This is rare, but trauma can play a part in developing Telangiectasia. This is more likely to occur when the skin has been crushed, or where fat has been destroyed.
Sun Exposure – It is important to be mindful when out in the sun, ensuring that a high SPF is protecting you. Excessive sun exposure can enlarge your blood vessels as the sunburn causes the top layer of the skin to peel; the veins can then become more prominent and noticeable.
Broken capillaries – Some medical research suggests that ‘thread veins’ are linked to broken capillaries that are caused by crossing the legs or wearing tight clothing.
Excessive alcohol consumption – Drinking alcohol can cause the skin to become flushed because alcohol enlarges the blood vessels. Therefore, binge drinking can eventually lead to Telangiectasia.
What Can I Do To Avoid Spider Veins?
‘Spider veins’ can not always be prevented, but there are measures that can be put in place to reduce the likelihood of getting the skin condition. It can be things such as regularly exercising and maintaining a healthy weight which will prevent the deterioration of the veins. Leading an unhealthy lifestyle can, in some cases, cause complications with ‘thread veins’.
Prolonged periods of sitting down and keeping legs elevated when resting can also help to prevent ‘spider veins’. When we sit down for a long time as we usually do, the muscles in our legs which help to pump blood around the body are not used as much; this then causes the blood to fall back down the leg, increasing the chances of getting ‘spider veins’.
Are Spider Veins Treatable?
Yes, absolutely. Here at Aesthetics of Liverpool, one of the treatments that we offer our clients with Telangiectasia is the Short Wave Diathermy treatment. SWD or electro-coagulation, as it is sometimes known as, is one of the most effective methods for treating Telangiectasia. Short Wave Diathermy involves the use of a very fine needle which is used to prick the skin covering the ‘thread veins’.
An electrical pulse is then transferred through the vein; causing them to disperse, resulting in them being less noticeable. Clients will see immediate results; however, more than one session may be necessary to achieve optimal results. SWD is a highly reputable procedure, having a 95% success rate after just one session.
How Can Aesthetics of Liverpool Help?
Here at Aesthetics of Liverpool, we want you to be comfortable in your own skin. We offer a variety of Spider Vein treatments, one of the best being SWD. Get in contact with us today on 0151 203 1393 and we will invite you to our Liverpool aesthetic clinic for a consultation.
During this consultation with one of our highly experienced practitioners, we will work with you to find the best treatment for your skin’s needs. The consultation is £150 which is then redeemable against the treatment of your choice. Don’t delay; we are here to help you feel good in your skin again.