Spider & Varicose Veins | Natural Remedies For Varicose Veins In NigeriaSeptember 30, 2018
Varicose veins & spider veins | Reasons Why You Have Varicose Veins On Your Legs & Arms
Varicose veins and spider veins usually appear in the legs and can cause pain, swelling, or an itchy rash. Varicose veins and spider veins are treatable. On this post, we have gathered everything you need to know about varicose veins and spider veins.
What Are Varicose Veins?
Varicose veins are enlarged veins that can be blue, red, or flesh-colored. They often look like cords and appear twisted and bulging. They can be swollen and raised above the surface of the skin. They usually occur on the following part of the body:
• Backs of the calves
• Inside of the leg
Spider Veins Definition?
Spider veins are similar to varicose veins but smaller and closer to the surface of the skin than varicose veins often red or blue. They can look like tree branches or spider webs with their short, jagged lines. They can be found on the legs and face and can cover either a very small or very large area of skin.
Causes Of Varicose Veins And Spider Veins?
• Weak or damaged valves in the veins
• Backup of blood
• Hormone changes
• Too much exposure to the sun
Varicose veins can be caused by weak or damaged valves in the veins. The heart pumps blood filled with oxygen and nutrients to the whole body through the arteries. Veins then carry the blood from the body back to the heart. As your leg muscles squeeze, they push blood back to the heart from your lower body against the flow of gravity.
Veins have valves that act as one-way flaps to prevent blood from flowing backwards as it moves up your legs. If the valves become weak, blood can leak back into the veins and collect there. (This problem is called venous insufficiency) When backed-up blood makes the veins bigger, they can become varicose.
Spider veins can be caused by the backup of blood. They can also be caused by hormone changes, exposure to the sun, and injuries.
How Common Is Varicose Veins In Nigeria?
VCV is very common in Nigeria with an estimate of more than 1.5 million cases annually in the country. It appears mostly on legs and feet.
Risk Factors Of Varicose Veins
There are many factors that may be responsible for someone having varicose or spider veins. Risk factors include include:
• People who are older are more likely to develop weaken valves which may lead to having VCV
• People who are born with weak vein valves are also at higher risk of developing this condition
• People who have family history of members who had vein problem can also develop it
• This condition can also occur as a result of changes in the hormones especially during puberty, pregnancy, and menopause
• Those who take birth control pills that contains estrogen and progesterone are at risk of developing this condition
• People who are obese or overweight have higher risk of putting pressure on their veins leading to VCV
• Putting long pressure on the veins by lack of movement, sitting, standing for a long time or extreme exercise can put you at risk of having VCV
• Staying too much under the sun is also a major risk factor
Why Do Varicose Veins And Spider Veins Usually Appear In The Leg?
It usually appear in the leg because of the following reasons:
• Pressure of the body weight
• Force of gravity
• The function of transporting blood from the bottom of the body up to the heart
• Leg veins have the toughest job carrying blood back to the heart
Signs Of Varicose Veins
Varicose veins can often be seen on the skin. Some other common symptoms of varicose veins in the legs include:
• Aching pain that may get worse after sitting or standing for a long time
• Throbbing or cramping
• Rash that’s itchy or irritated
• Darkening of the skin (in severe cases)
• Restless legs
Are Varicose Veins And Spider Veins Dangerous?
Both are nothing to worry about but may make you feel uncomfortable seeing them. It can also cause mild aching pain, throbbing, itching or burning.
In some cases, varicose veins can lead to more serious health problems. These include:
• Sores or skin ulcers due to chronic (long-term) backing up of blood. These sores or ulcers are painful and hard to heal. Sometimes they cannot heal until the backward blood flow in the vein is repaired.
• Bleeding. The skin over the veins becomes thin and easily injured. When an injury occurs, there can be significant blood loss.
• Superficial thrombophlebitis, which is a blood clot that forms in a vein just below the skin. Symptoms include skin redness; a firm, tender, warm vein; and sometimes pain and swelling.
• Deep vein thrombosis, which is a blood clot in a deeper vein. It can cause a “pulling” feeling in the calf, pain, warmth, redness, and swelling. However, sometimes it causes no significant symptoms. If the blood clot travels to the lungs, it can be fatal.
When To See A Doctor If You Have Varicose Veins?
You should see a doctor about varicose veins if:
• The vein has become swollen, red, or very tender or warm to the touch
• There are sores or a rash on the leg or near the ankle
• The skin on the ankle and calf becomes thick and changes color
• One of the varicose veins begins to bleed
• Your leg symptoms are interfering with daily activities
• The appearance of the veins is causing you distress
Varicose Veins Diagnosis
Varicose veins can easily be diagnosed by physical examination but in some cases your doctor may conduct other tests based on the information you provided and the kind of symptoms you have.
The test can be done to confirm if there are other disorders or not. The doctor may use ultrasound to see the veins structure, check the blood flow in the veins, and seek for any sign of blood clot.
Different categories of doctors you can see for varicose veins include:
• A phlebotomist, which is a vein specialist
• A vascular medicine doctor, who focuses on the blood system
• A vascular surgeon, who can perform surgery and do other procedures
• An interventional radiologist, who specializes in using imaging tools to see inside the body and do treatments with little or no cutting
• A dermatologist, who specializes in skin conditions
Varicose And Spider Veins Treatment
Varicose veins are treated with lifestyle changes and medical treatments. These can:
• Relieve symptoms
• Prevent complications
• Improve appearance
Some treatment options include:
Compression stockings put helpful pressure on your veins. There are 3 kinds of compression stockings:
• Support pantyhose, which offer the least amount of pressure. These also often are not “gradient” or “graduated.” That means they provide pressure all over instead of where it is needed most.
• Over-the-counter gradient compression hose, which give a little more pressure. They are sold in medical supply and drugstores.
• Prescription-strength gradient compression hose, which offer the greatest amount of pressure. They are sold in medical supply and drugstores. You need to be fitted for them by someone who has been trained to do this.
Sclerotherapy is the most common treatment for both spider veins and varicose veins. The doctor uses a needle to inject a liquid chemical into the vein. The chemical causes the vein walls to swell, stick together, and seal shut. This stops the flow of blood, and the vein turns into scar tissue. In few weeks, the vein should fade.
The same vein may need to be treated more than once. Treatments are usually done every 4 to 6 weeks. You may be asked to wear gradient compression stockings after sclerotherapy to help with healing and decrease swelling. This treatment is very effective when done correctly.
Possible side effects include:
• Stinging, red and raised patches of skin, or bruises where the injection was made. These usually go away shortly after treatment.
• Spots, brown lines, or groups of fine red blood vessels around the treated vein. These also usually go away shortly after treatment.
• Lumps of blood that gets trapped in vein and cause inflammation. This is not dangerous. You can relieve swelling by applying heat and taking aspirin.
Surface Laser Treatment
In some cases, laser treatments can effectively treat spider veins and smaller varicose veins. This technique sends very strong bursts of light through the skin onto the vein. This makes the vein slowly fade and disappear. Not all skin types and colors can be safely treated with lasers.
Possible side effects of lasers include:
• Redness or swelling of the skin right after the treatment that disappears within a few days
• Discolored skin that will disappear within 1 to 2 months
• Burns and scars from poorly performed laser surgery, though this is rare
Surgery is used mostly to treat very large varicose veins. Types of surgery for varicose veins include:
• Surgical ligation and stripping. With this treatment, problem veins are tied shut and completely removed from the leg through small cuts in the skin. Removing the veins does not affect the circulation of blood in the leg. Veins deeper in the leg take care of the larger volumes of blood. It takes between 1 and 4 weeks to recover from the surgery.
Possible problems include:
• A risk of heart and breathing problems from anesthesia
• Bleeding and congestion of blood. But, the collected blood usually settles on its own and does not require any further treatment.
• Wound infection, inflammation, swelling, and redness
• Permanent scars
• Damage of nerve tissue around the treated vein. It’s hard to avoid harming small nerve branches when veins are removed. This damage can cause numbness, burning, or a change in feeling around the scar.
• A deep vein blood clot. These clots can travel to the lungs and heart. The medicine heparin may be used to reduce the chance of these dangerous blood clots. But, heparin also can increase the normal amount of bleeding and bruising after surgery.
In this treatment, an instrument called a PIN stripper is inserted into a vein. The tip of the PIN stripper is sewn to the end of the vein, and when it is removed, the vein is pulled out.
Prevention Of Varicose Veins And Spider Veins
• Always wear sunscreen to protect your skin when under the sun
• Exercise regularly to improve your leg strength, circulation, and vein strength e.g. walking or running
• Maintain healthy weight to avoid putting too much pressure on your legs
• Don’t cross your legs for long times when sitting
• Elevate your legs when watching TV, sitting or resting as much as possible.
• Avoid standing for longer hours
• Wear elastic support stockings and avoid tight clothing that constricts your waist, groin, or legs.
• Avoid wearing high heels for long periods of time.
You Can Read About Other Skin Infections Remedy HERE
Natural Remedy For Varicose & Spider Veins
• Including ginger, onions, garlic and pineapple in your diet on a regular basis
• After taking your bath, apply Castor oil over the varicose veins affected and massage into your legs from the feet
• Eat a low-salt diet rich in high-fiber foods. Eating fiber reduces the chances of constipation, which can contribute to varicose veins. High-fiber foods include fresh fruits and vegetables and whole grains, like bran. Eating less salt can help with the swelling that comes with varicose veins.
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