Varicose veins are the result of the dilation of the veins that become inflamed and become noticeable on the surface of the skin. These injuries are most common on the calves or inside of the legs and are usually purple or dark blue in color and crooked and bulging in shape. Varicose veins begin to form when the venous valves, which make it possible for blood to return to the heart, stop working properly, allowing blood to pool in the veins and cause them to dilate.
Currently, it is believed that 1 in 2 people over the age of 50 suffers from this condition which is more common in women than in men. Varicose veins are much more than an unsightly problem, they are the result of a circulatory disorder and can cause swelling of the ankles, muscle cramps, pain in the legs, itching, and swelling and thickening of the skin. Many factors can influence the appearance of these lesions, but are varicose veins hereditary? Find out in this FastlyHealarticle.
Is it true that varicose veins are hereditary?
Varicose veins are caused by venous insufficiency, a condition that suggests a genetic load of 97% probability of developing them, therefore, yes, varicose veins are hereditary. Anyone whose mother or father has dilated veins has a high risk of developing varicose veins, however, there are other factors that can increase the probability, such as:
- Advanced age.
- To be a woman.
- Being overweight.
- Be pregnant.
- Born with valve problems.
- History of blood clots.
- Sitting or standing for a long time.
Varicose veins are a condition that can be avoided, however, when there is a family history of dilated veins, there is not much we can do to avoid this condition, therefore we must act in order to prevent the complications that this injury can cause. Although there are situations that cannot be controlled, such as pregnancy, there are other factors that we can monitor to delay the appearance of varicose veins as much as possible, such as physical activity, sedentary lifestyle, being overweight and eating.
Treating varicose veins once they have come out is very important to avoid venous hypertension in the extremities that compromises blood flow completely. Next, you will be able to know some recommendations to avoid varicose veins, how to treat them and advice for the day to day.
How to prevent varicose veins
As we mentioned before, it is very difficult for a person with a family history of varicose veins not to develop this condition, however, there are some actions that are recommended to be used to control other risk actors and reduce the probability of suffering these injuries or avoid their early appearance. To prevent varicose veins it is important to:
Fight sedentary lifestyle
Physical activity is extremely important to promote good blood circulation, so if you can’t join a gym or can’t find a sport that you like, try walking every day for 60 minutes. To stay active, you can also prefer the stairs instead of the elevator, return home on foot or by bike, use the car less and any other type of activity that involves your legs being in motion.
Take care of the diet
Eating a healthy diet helps avoid high cholesterol levels that can negatively affect blood circulation. Also, eating in a balanced way will prevent weight gain, one of the main risk factors for dilated veins. Eating low in fat, increasing the consumption of fruits and vegetables, preferring lean meats and cooking in the oven or steamed are recommended habits to eat in a healthy way.
We already mentioned it: being overweight represents a significant risk for the formation of varicose veins. If you have to lose a lot of weight, it is recommended that you visit a nutritionist so that together you can develop a meal plan according to your needs. Exercising and eating healthy is the perfect recipe to lose weight in a healthy way.
Avoid high temperatures
Hot temperatures compromise blood circulation and slow it down. For this reason, it is important to avoid that the water in the shower is very hot and to always prefer warm water. It is also recommended to end each shower with plenty of cold water, since the sudden change in temperature activates blood circulation and helps prevent varicose veins.
Staying in the same position for a long time
If you work sitting all day in an office, it is important that every hour and a half you offer your legs mobility. Therefore, it is advisable to place a bench next to your feet to have them raised from time to time or simply get up from your position and go for a 5-minute walk. This will reduce the heaviness of your legs and help stimulate circulation.
Avoid tight clothing
The tighter the clothes you wear on your legs, the more risk you run of affecting blood circulation in them and promoting the formation of varicose veins. He prefers clothes made with a fabric that does not adhere as much to the body and avoids the excessive use of heels or closed shoes.
How to treat varicose veins
If you have verified that varicose veins are hereditary and there was nothing you could do to prevent their appearance, then it is important that you know what alternatives can be functional to eliminate them and avoid the complications that these injuries can bring:
- Sclerotherapy: consists of injecting saline solution into the vein, which will harden and then the dilation will disappear.
- Phlebectomy – Small incisions are made near the affected vein to remove it.
- Excision – Used when the vein is spread throughout the entire leg and is used to tie off very large veins such as the superficial saphenous vein.
- Aesthetic treatments: some specialists suggest treating varicose veins with laser procedures, as they ensure that the possibility that the vein will re-dilate is less than with other treatments.
Tips for living with varicose veins
- Raise your legs above heart level for 15 minutes at least 4 times a day.
- Wear rest stockings to reduce swelling in the legs or ankles.
- Avoid sitting or standing for a long time.
- If ulcers occur in varicose veins, it is important to care for the wound and keep it disinfected.
- If the skin is very dry or looks chapped, it is important to use moisturizers for maximum hydration.
- The footwear should not be totally flat or very high, the ideal is to choose those shoes with a heel of at least 4 cm.
- Don’t sit cross-legged.
- Sleeping with a pillow under your legs to keep them up at night.
Discover in the following article which are the best home remedies for varicose veins .
This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.
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I am a Surgeon with a diploma in comprehensive ultrasound and surgical care residency, an area I am specializing in. During the exercise of my profession, I have realized the need for patients to know the diseases they suffer, and I can tell you that a large part of their complications is due to a lack of information. Being a health web writer allows me to transmit my experience, without borders, to all those readers eager for knowledge, educate them in the prevention of diseases and promote a healthy lifestyle.