Are you constantly trying to hide unsightly veins on your legs? Are you constantly wearing long skirts and pants in the summer, or staying wrapped up in a towel when at the pool because you are self-conscious about the obvious veins in your legs? If you answered “yes” to these questions, you're only one of many women who has this problem. When the valves in your blood vessels become weak and the blood does not flow properly, the result can be a network of enlarged capillaries called spider veins that are visible through your skin, usually on the legs or face. While the good news is spider veins (telengiectasias) typically are not a health hazard, the not so good news is that they are unattractive. However, spider veins can be treated safely and effectively. Here are four techniques to consider.
Sclerotherapy: Sclerotherapy involves injecting a saline solution into the affected vessels where it triggers swelling, blood clotting and scarring that eventually causes the spider veins to disappear. The procedure can be done in a doctor’s office and takes about 15 to 30 minutes or longer, depending on the severity of the problem. During sclerotherapy you may feel mild cramping around the treated area for several minutes. After the procedure is done, temporary side effects can include raised red skin and bruising at the injection sites, brown lines, appearance of new tiny blood vessels and itching. Up to 80 percent of treated veins may disappear with each treatment, and it typically takes three to six weeks for a positive response. Two or more sessions may be needed to eliminate all of your spider veins. (photo credit)
Simple Laser Treatment: During this noninvasive outpatient procedure, the doctor focuses a laser on the spider veins. The light enters the skin, heats the blood vessels and causes them to eventually disappear. Some patients experience minor pain when the laser hits the skin. According to professionals of the Centric Health Surgical Centre of Sarnia, a clinic that provides plastic surgery in Windsor, laser treatments last for 15 to 20 minutes, and more than one session is often necessary. Sessions are usually scheduled six weeks apart. Temporary side effects can include redness, swelling, discoloration and mild burns.
Combination Therapy: Sometimes doctors recommend a combination of sclerotherapy and simple laser treatment for spider veins. If you have tried one of these treatments but the veins haven't completely disappeared, consider trying the other, or some sort of combination of both. Discuss this option with your healthcare provider, as they will be able to give you the best advice about how to combine these treatments to get rid of the spider veins for good. Just because one treatment doesn't work on it's own, it doesn't mean it won't work when combined with another treatment.
Horse Chestnut: Research on horse chestnut seed (Aesculus hippocstanum) has demonstrated that this natural remedy can improve blood circulation, strengthen the capillaries and reduce inflammation. The active ingredient is aescin, and you should look for a supplement that provides a daily dosage of 50 milligrams of this substance. It takes about three months before results will be evident.
If you have unsightly spider veins, explore your options with a healthcare provider to choose the best treatment for your situation. You have a few options that are virtually painless and will give you legs you'll be happy with. Be sure to discuss lifestyle habits that can help prevent further spider vein development.
For more beautiful skin tips, read 5 Essential Vitamins for Beautiful Skin.
This article was written by Dixie Somers, a freelance writer who loves to write for business, health, women's interests, or home and family. Dixie lives in Arizona with her husband and three beautiful daughters who are the inspiration for her writing.