Spider veins are thin, red lines that run through your skin, leaving marks that may resemble webs. Unlike varicose veins, they do not stick out of your skin, but they are still visible, which can lead to a lack of satisfaction with the way your body looks. Veins are unpreventable and can sometimes be genetic, which is why Franklin Skin and Laser in Franklin, TN provides some of the best methods for reducing and eliminating these unsightly marks from your body.
Spider veins are caused by problems in blood flow and typically appear on your legs and sometimes your face. Women, especially aging seniors, are twice as likely to develop veins. Hormone changes can also cause them, sometimes affecting pregnant women regardless of age. While there are usually no symptoms or side effects, sometimes your legs may feel heavy, slow, and tired, especially after sitting or standing.
How to Eliminate Spider Veins
While you can take steps at home and in your daily routine to prevent spider veins, you will need to undergo a medical treatment to eliminate pre-existing ones. Traditionally, doctors have used methods such as vein stripping to treat these conditions.
This dated method is a surgical procedure that comes with a long period of downtime Sclerotherapy and laser vein therapy are the two modern, better, and easier methods for getting rid of them, requiring no surgery at all.
Sclerotherapy works best to treat smaller veins and has been used by doctors since the early 1900s. During this process, your doctor will inject a chemical into your veins that cause their walls to swell up and seal shut by sticking together. In turn, blood flow will stop and your veins will then transform into scar tissue, which will ultimately disappear. These appointments generally require three to six treatments that are spaced six to eight weeks apart.
Many people wear gradient compression stockings afterward to promote the healing process. Within a few weeks, the treated veins will fade. Depending on the size and severity of your case, it may take a few additional treatments to completely eliminate them. There is also a chance that your veins can return with this type of treatment.
What to Expect During Sclerotherapy
Before your appointment, you will need to purchase and wear special compression stockings for six weeks. You should also expect to wear them for at least two weeks after treatment. Your doctor will then clean your skin with an alcohol wipe before using a fine needle to inject a sclerosing solution into your vein directly. The number of injections you receive is dependent on the size and location of each vein.
After a sclerotherapy treatment, you will have to wear your stockings anytime you’re on your feet. You will be able to return to your normal activities right after, and it is advised to walk for at least a half-hour per day following the first two weeks. The only actions you will have to avoid are heavy lifting, strenuous activity, and using Jacuzzies. You can expect each treatment to last 15 minutes to an hour.
Who is Eligible for Sclerotherapy?
We will go over your medical history during your initial appointment and determine if you are the right candidate for this kind of treatment. Women who are pregnant, taking birth control pills, or who have had a blood clot in the past may not be eligible for such treatment.
Laser Vein Therapy
Laser vein therapy, sometimes called endovenous laser ablation, is an effective, yet minimally invasive treatment that uses laser energy to break down vein vessels until they are absorbed by your body. Once the heat collapses the veins, they will naturally close up and your body will redirect blood flow to healthier veins that are deeper in your leg. Many patients who are looking to get rid of their spider veins opt for this treatment because it is fast-acting and safe.
Laser treatment will require multiple sessions that are spaced apart every few weeks until the veins have entirely disappeared. Laser therapy is so effective that your veins will not return, although it does not prevent new veins from appearing in other areas of your body. Treatments generally take about an hour to complete and you’ll be able to return to your normal activities immediately.
What to Expect During Laser Vein Therapy
While there are no significant steps you have to take to prepare for laser vein therapy, you should be careful to avoid sun exposure, NSAIDs, alcohol, and smoking for a few days leading up to treatment. On the day of your appointment, you should also avoid using any creams and lotions on the area that will be treated, as well as stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
During treatment, your doctor will use light energy to heat your veins until they are damaged and form scar tissue, which will eventually clear up on its own. Depending on the severity of your case, you may or may not have to return for additional treatments until your veins are completely gone.
Who is Eligible for Laser Vein Therapy?
Anyone who is in good health and doesn’t smoke or have a history of blood diseases and bleeding problems can undergo this type of vein treatment.
Sclerotherapy and Laser Vein Therapy FAQ
1. How Long After Sclerotherapy Will My Veins Disappear?
If you are treated for small veins, you will usually see results within three to six weeks. It may between three and four months for those with larger veins to begin seeing results after sclerotherapy.
2. What Happens If I Don’t Wear Compression Stockings After Sclerotherapy?
Failure to wear compression stockings after a sclerotherapy treatment may cause blood to accumulate in a partially collapsed vein, which can lead to a blood clot, which can then cause swelling, inflammation, and further irritation.
3. How Much Does Sclerotherapy Cost?
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, a typical sclerotherapy treatment will cost around $343. Costs can change depending on how many treatments you need. During your initial consultation, we will review and discuss pricing based on your individualized needs.
4. How Many Laser Treatments Does It Take to Get Rid of Veins?
Some patients require up to three treatments for their veins to completely disappear after laser therapy. Small veins may fade immediately after treatment, while larger ones might linger for one to three months before they are entirely gone.
7. How Much Does Laser Vein Therapy Cost?
Laser vein removal can cost anywhere from $300 to $600, with an average of $443, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. Since this treatment is used for cosmetic purposes, insurance does not cover the treatment. Your insurance may or may not cover laser therapy, depending on whether your health shows signs of an underlying vein disease During your first consultation with us, we will review your individual case and determine the pricing based on your needs.
8. What Happens If You Don’t Treat Your Veins?
If left untreated, spider veins usually do not cause any trouble or health concerns. If your veins are large in size, they can cause discomforts such as aching and throbbing. Most people discover this discomfort as a result of sitting or standing for long periods, which is usually what prompts them to have a treatment.
Taking Preventative Action
After undergoing either sclerotherapy or laser vein therapy, there are some habits you can form to prevent new veins from appearing on your body. Doing so will protect you from having to undergo additional procedures in the future and can help you save money.
Since one job of the muscles in your legs is to help blood flow back to your heart, any physical exercise that targets your legs can protect you from seeing new spider veins form. Think of how much time you devote to sitting in front of the TV or computer, or even in your car as you drive to work. It may not seem like a lot of downtimes, but it can quickly add up.
Among the best exercises for preventing new veins are walking, marching in place, calf raises, running, cycling, toe flexes, squats, and standing on your tiptoes. It also helps to get in the habit of stretching, improving your circulation, and strengthening the muscles that support your veins.
If your career requires you to sit or stand for long periods, you should try to take a break every half hour and walk around so your muscles can send blood back up to your heart at a faster pace. Proper circulation can help prevent the formation of spider veins. It is not the same as regular exercise, but can still contribute to nice-looking legs.
Maintain Your Weight
If you are overweight or obese, your body may have a more challenging time pushing blood to your heart due to stress on your lower body. While losing weight cannot erase pre-existing veins, it can help prevent new veins from appearing as well as stop existing ones from becoming worse. When you lose weight, it takes the pressure off of your legs and will enable them to work more efficiently.
Keep Your Feet Up
Some professions require you to sit for long periods. If you cannot avoid sitting often, it is helpful to prop your feet up as much as possible using a stool or footrest. This also helps the blood in your legs flow faster to your heart without you having to get up as often.
Compression stockings can help increase blood flow from your legs by putting pressure on the veins around your feet, ankles, and lower legs. While you can use support pantyhose, they provide the least amount of pressure to your veins.
For the best results, you can wear gradient compression hose, found in most medical supply stores, or prescription-strength compression hose, which may require a doctor’s prescription and are usually custom-fit by a professional. If you have a heart condition, you should talk with your doctor before using this method.
Start Your Spider Vein Removal Treatment Today!
Spider veins aren’t as prominent or painful as varicose veins but are still problematic for those who want to look good in shorts, bathing suits, and in front of the mirror. While veins do not cause significant health issues, getting rid of them can make you feel better and more confident on a cosmetic level. The great news is that sclerotherapy and laser vein treatment are two options that are cost-effective, efficient, and each has a quick recovery time.
If you are ready to enjoy silky-smooth skin on your legs, call Franklin Skin and Laser in Franklin, TN today to schedule your initial consultation. Our expert team eagerly awaits the chance to help you feel confident about stepping back into your skin.