With warmer weather, many of us are showing off our legs by wearing shorts or skirts. But those of you whose legs are covered with blue veins (varicose veins) may be shying away from showing off your legs.
Aside from being hard to look at, varicose veins can cause symptoms including itchiness, heaviness, fatigue, and discomfort. Varicose veins are swollen and enlarged veins and appear blue in color. Many people do not treat their varicose veins either because they are symptomless or because they are scared to undergo treatment for them. But treatment has advanced greatly over the last few decades, making it less invasive and safer.
Although many people believe that varicose veins are harmless, it is advised that you seek treatment for them, even if they are symptomless. This is because if the veins are left untreated, complications can eventually develop including hyperpigmentation, lipodermatosclerosis, venous leg ulcers, spontaneous bleeding, superficial thrombophlebitis, and deep vein thrombosis. The latter condition is very serious as a blood clot in the leg can come loose and move to other parts of the body, where it can become life-threatening.
Generally, if you notice varicose veins, you should speak to your doctor so they can monitor your health. But there are tell-tale signs and symptoms that signal that you should most definitely treat your varicose veins.
How to know if you should treat your varicose veins
You should see your doctor right away regarding your varicose veins if you experience the following:
- A vein is swollen, becomes red and tender, or feels warm to the touch
- Sores or rashes develop nearby
- Skin on the ankle or calf thickens and changes color
- Bleeding from the vein occurs
- Symptoms impact your daily activities or trigger emotional distress
How to treat varicose veins
As mentioned, previous treatments for varicose veins were intrusive and painful, so it’s no surprise that many people are scared to have their veins treated. The good news is that treatment methods have advanced and now the majority of treatments are non-invasive and cause minimal pain.
These treatments include endovenous laser ablation, microphlebectomy, and sclerotherapy. You can simply walk away from the doctor’s office after many of these treatments and they do not require hospitalization.
Speak to your doctor about your varicose veins and you can decide together which treatment is best for you.