There are certain vein problems that women are more susceptible to, so it’s important to counteract these issues by taking extra steps to protect vein health.
There are reasons why females are at an increased risk of problems and there are steps you can take to protect yourself, as well as treatments available if you are already experiencing vein problems.
What vein problems are women more susceptible to?
Women are much more likely to suffer from varicose and spider or thread veins. This is believed to be because the female hormone, estrogen weakens the walls of the veins, causing leaking valves.
Add to this, fluctuating hormones during pregnancy; hormonal birth control methods; and the menopause with the double hit of aging and hormone replacement therapy (HRT)—which all take a serious toll on the veins, too.
Other causes of varicose and thread veins include long periods or standing or sitting, and obesity.
What can you do to protect your veins?
There are several different ways to look after your veins (and your circulatory system in general) and they all stem from simply leading a healthy and active lifestyle.
Changing your position frequently is very important. So, if you are sitting for a long period of time; for example, if you work in an office or are taking a long car journey, make sure to get out of your seat regularly, walk around, and stretch your legs.
Conversely, if you spend a long time on your feet—if you work in retail or hospitality for example, make sure to take breaks frequently and elevate your feet when possible.
Taking regular exercise and eating a healthy, balanced diet can also be beneficial as it can help you maintain a healthy weight and improve your circulation.
Symptoms to look out for
Some vein problems are easy to spot—veins close to the surface can become noticeably swollen and lumpy, and blue or purple in color.
Veins that are not at the surface obviously can’t be seen, but there are still symptoms to look out for. You might feel aching, throbbing, cramps, or itchy skin in your legs; or swelling in the feet and ankles.
Vein disease treatments
Specialist centers such as NYMetroVein provide a variety of vein care treatments to relieve the symptoms of varicose and thread veins. Once you have been diagnosed by your doctor, they will be able to recommend the treatment right for you.
Treatments include sclerotherapy, which treats smaller varicose veins and spider veins and is generally carried out to improve the appearance of the skin; whereas microphlebectomy removes larger varicose veins, but by only using a small incision scarring is minimized.
Another option for varicose veins is vein closure, which is another minimally invasive procedure that is used as an alternative to surgery.
While varicose veins aren’t necessarily an immediate cause for concern, if you have pain or discomfort—including sore or irritated skin—it is important to seek medical advice as soon as possible. They will then be able to determine an appropriate course of treatment.