One of the conflicting beauty wisdoms for women involves crossing the legs and varicose veins: while it is considered a more feminine trait to cross your legs, an old wives tale warns that doing so may cause varicose veins. These blue and bulging veins in the back of the leg are not only unsightly, they may be painful as well. Some women seem immune to getting varicose veins, is it due to the fact that they're not crossing their legs?
According to The Doctors, over 50% of women over the age 50 have varicose veins and their less painful cousin, spider veins. While spider veins are more of a cosmetic issue, varicose veins may be painful and bulge out significantly. And while crossing your legs does not cause varicose veins, many women are genetically predisposed to get them and certain lifestyle factors may increase your chances of getting varicose or spider veins.
The venous system comprises of both deep and superficial veins but all veins have valves which help pump blood towards the heart. When everything is in working order, the valves all open and blood flow is unhindered. However, when the valves fail, blood gets trapped in the vein and creates a distention or bulge, also known as varicose veins. Women typically have more problems with varicose veins since men have more muscles in the legs which help with pumping blood back into the system.
Many physicians believe that varicose veins are due to genetics. Author of Flat Belly Diet!, 400 Calorie Fix and renowned health, nutrition and weight loss expert Liz Vaccariello recommends getting plenty of daily exercise if you have a genetic predisposition to varicose veins. By boosting circulation and keeping the veins and circulatory system healthy, blood won't collect due to valve failure.
However, if you are one of the 50% that already have a vein condition, there are many new options to address your issues. In the past, traditional varicose vein treatment involved surgery to remove the veins. Today, there are multiple non-surgical treatments that include sclerotherapy and lasers to effectively treat spider and varicose veins.
With so many options available, be sure to speak with your physician about the right treatment for your spider or varicose veins. Another important thing to remember is while these treatments will destroy the existing veins, they can return. The best prevention is incorporating daily exercise into your schedule to keep veins from returning.
Asclera is an injectable sclerotherapy medicine from Merz Aesthetics. FDA approved for the treatment of spider veins, it has yet been studied to see if this treatment applies towards larger varicose veins. The solution damages the lining of the blood vessels when then close and disappear. Multiple treatments are necessary and results can be seen in a few weeks.
Veinwave utilizes an ultrasound pulse that is delivered through a needle that is inserted right below the skin, near the existing vein. The heat coagulates the blood and destroys the vein. There may be some redness immediately after treatment but eventually goes away. Typically, only one treatment is necessary.
- Laser Treatments
Laser treatments such as the Cynergy Vascular Workstation from Cynosure use laser energy to treat spider and smaller varicose veins. This treatment doesn't require needles or solution, many patients say the treatment tingles slightly but is not painful. Laser therapy for spider and varicose veins may take between 2-3 treatments to get the best results.