Doctor showing varicose veinsVaricose veins are basically enlarged and swollen veins on your legs that are typically colored dark purple or blue. They might likewise be bulging, lumpy, and look sort of twisted. But why do they occur in the first place?

How Do Varicose Veins Develop?

In general, you could develop varicose veins when the tiny valves in your veins cease to function properly. With healthy veins, blood flows to your heart smoothly and doesn’t flow backwards because of small valves that close and open, letting blood through. When these valves become damaged or weakens, blood would be forced to flow backwards and pool in the veins, which in time would cause it to become inflamed and swollen. Specific factors could increase your risk of getting varicose veins, including old age, being overweight, and being pregnant.

The most common telltale signs of varicose veins include:

  • Swollen ankles and feet
  • Uncomfortable, heavy, and aching legs
  • Leg muscle cramps
  • Color changes and dry skin in the affected legs

Although varicose veins are pretty common and affect three in 10 adults, studies indicate that females have a higher risk of developing them than males. Likewise, any vein could turn into a varicose vein, but the most susceptible ones are in the legs, calves, and feet because walking and standing place additional pressure on your lower body’s veins.

Could Varicose Veins Be Treated?

For plenty of people, varicose veins aren’t a serious health issue. They might look unpleasant, if the varicose veins don’t impact proper blood circulation, or lead to other health problems, they won’t need treatment. In the event that you need treatment, the first line of treatment typically includes raising the affected leg when at rest, exercising regularly, and wearing compression stockings.

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But, if they lead to complications or are still causing you significant discomfort and leg aches, Heartofdixieveincenter.com notes that you might require more intensive treatment such as sclerotherapy, endothermal ablation, or stripping and ligation.

What’s the Outlook?

It’s important to note that in most cases, varicose veins only worsen over time, even if you have taken the necessary steps for managing pain and making lifestyle changes for controlling them. In other cases, although they look unappealing, they won’t lead to long-term health issues. But, there might be cases where varicose veins could result in leg sores or ulcers, chronic inflammation, and blood clots, which could in turn rupture. With this in mind, consult a vein specialist if you experience severe symptoms.