We’re at the height of the summer season here in Northeast Florida, and you’re no doubt looking to rock that new sultry new swimsuit or sweet sundress. But if you’re not mindful of skincare, you just may see your chic new look go wrong. That’s because exposure to the sun’s damaging UV rays can cause more than sunburn – it also can lead to spider veins.
Sun exposure can weaken the skin’s upper layers, depleting its moisture and diminishing its elasticity. As a result, the skin and the veins just below its surface aren’t able to move and bend normally. When veins are unable to move properly, normal blood flow is impacted. Rather than being pumped back up to the heart, blood simply pools backward, creating spider veins.
Spider veins can develop anywhere on the body, but they’re most commonly associated with the legs, particularly the upper thigh, below the knee joint and around the ankles. They also commonly develop on the face, generally around the nose, cheeks and chin. Besides the sun, other factors that can boost your risk of developing spider veins include:
- Age: Spider veins can appear at any age, but most commonly begin between the ages of 18 and 35, peaking between 50 and 60.
- Gender: Sorry, ladies. While men aren’t immune to spider veins, the condition is far more prevalent in women – four to one.
- Pregnancy: During pregnancy, your hormones are in overdrive and this can weaken vein walls. Also, your blood volume increases dramatically. This puts pressure on your veins and causes their valves to malfunction, which can then cause blood to pool inside the veins. Then, in later stages of pregnancy, your enlarged uterus can press against your veins and cause them to dilate and blood to pool.
- Occupational and lifestyle choices: If your job forces you to sit or stand for long periods of time, or you’re simply a couch potato at home, the weight of blood continuously pressing against closed valves can cause them to fail.
To avoid varicose veins, maintain a healthy weight, adopt a nutritious diet, exercise regularly and be sun smart. Wear a high SPF sunblock every time you go outside, particularly on your face and legs.
Already seeing signs of spider veins developing on your legs? Parkway Plastic Surgery can help with a procedure called sclerotherapy. This highly effective treatment involves your surgeon injecting a sclerosing agent into your dilated valves, causing them to collapse and ultimately disappear. Call 904-396-1186 to schedule a consultation today.