Varicose veins are a common problem that affects as many as half of all adults over the age of 50. Despite their prevalence, not everyone that suffers with these bulging vessels understands what the condition is all about. To help you separate the fact from the fiction, check out these three common myths about varicose veins and the truth behind them.
Myth #1: Varicose veins are nothing but ugly, swollen vessels.
While it may be true that varicose veins are unsightly, they are also a visible symptom of an underlying vein condition. Varicose veins often occur as a result of a disorder known as chronic venous insufficiency or CVI. This condition develops when tiny valves inside the veins stop working properly, allowing blood to reflux and pool inside the vessel. The results is a weakened, swollen vein that becomes varicose over time.
When CVI is the reason behind your varicose veins, it is also important to know that the condition can worsen if it is left unchecked. You might begin to develop symptoms along with your varicose veins, such as pain and swelling of the lower leg. Skin changes can also occur, due to the increased pressure inside the veins. If the condition is not treated, you may find some of those skin changes, including discoloration and thickening, may become permanent.
Myth #2: Only little old ladies get varicose veins.
When you think about varicose veins, does your grandmother come to your mind? While those swollen vessels are a common bane to the senior female set, this group is certainly not the only one to struggle with this condition. In fact, varicose veins can happen to anyone. Some of the factors that might increase your risk for varicose veins include:
- Family history of varicose veins
- Family or personal history of blood-clotting disorders
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Significant weight gain
- Long periods of sitting (such as on a plane) or standing
- Leg trauma that caused damage to the veins
If you have any of these risk factors, the best approach is to take preventative steps as soon as possible. If you are sedentary or have gained weight, develop a daily exercise plan that will get the muscles moving and the veins working more efficiently. If your job requires long periods of sitting or standing, make sure to take regular breaks to exercise the legs and get the blood pumping. You can also talk to your doctor about whether compression stockings – special socks that promote healthy blood flow in the lower legs – might be a good choice for you.
Myth #3: There is nothing you can do about your varicose veins.
Despite their unattractive appearance and even their discomfort, many varicose vein sufferers are resigned to the fact they will have to live with their bulging vessels forever. This could not be further from the truth. Today, there are many minimally-invasive vein treatments that effectively eliminate varicose veins and their painful symptoms.
At the Vein Center of Florida & South Baldwin, we offer a variety of vein treatments that allow us to tailor your procedure to your specific condition. Choice of treatment often depends on the size of the varicose veins and their location. With state-of-the-art technology and tried-and-true treatment options, we can help you get rid of those uncomfortable veins without putting a major crimp in your daily routine.
Varicose veins are not something you simply must suffer with. Contact the Vein Center of Florida & South Baldwin today at 800-910-8346 to find out which vein treatment is the right one for you.