Articles Tagged: varicose veins

 

Can Varicose Veins Cause Your Legs to Itch?

Posted on March 10, 2021 by Ella Fedonenko

Varicose veins are caused by blood circulation problems, particularly when veins become enlarged and when the one-way valves that normally prevent blood from flowing “backward” in our veins stop working properly. Blood pressure can increase, and blood can start to pool in the veins, which can result in further inflammation and stretching of the blood vessels. 

Varicose Vein Symptoms

Varicose veins can be responsible for a number of different symptoms, ranging from heaviness, aching, and throbbing. They can also cause changes in skin pigmentation, skin inflammation, and open sores. Varicose veins may also not cause any pain or irritation, especially during their early development. However, a number of more serious side-effects can develop if they’re left untreated.

Swelling

Swelling can be caused by fluid leakage from varicose veins into the surrounding tissue. Left unattended this can lead to long-term changes to skin pigmentation, as well as hardening of the skin as it becomes dry and irritated.

Skin Ulcers

Swelling, if untreated, can lead to situations where the skin’s ability to heal from minor injuries is impaired. This in turn, can lead to the development of skin ulcers, which are areas of damaged tissue that are unable to heal naturally. 

Skin Infections

Another result of prolonged swelling is the loss of the skin’s ability to resist bacterial infections. Skin infections can also further contribute to swelling, creating a vicious circle.

Itching

Itching is a common result of advanced varicose veins – it’s related to the above symptoms and is another side-effect of swelling and inflammation. The skin can also become dry, leading to flaking, which can also result in itching.

Itchy skin may also be caused by other medical conditions, so it becomes important to seek medical advice before deciding on any course of treatment.

Seeking Medical Advice

Varicose veins can be caused by several different conditions and can also lead to other, potentially very serious medical problems. We strongly recommend seeking qualified medical advice if you have started to develop varicose veins, regardless of whether you are also considering cosmetic procedures to help reduce their appearance. 

Your Laser Skin Care

Your Laser Skin Care are medically qualified and highly experienced — we offer a full range of services, including full diagnosis of the cause of your varicose veins and advice on the best ways to treat the condition. We have extensive experience providing both laser vein therapy and Sclerotherapy treatments, as well as a host of other non-invasive cosmetic procedures. Call us at (323) 525-1516 to schedule a free consultation or visit us online for more information.

 

How to Prevent Varicose Veins from Worsening

Posted on February 26, 2021 by Ella Fedonenko

We’ve recently covered several of the possible causes of varicose veins, as well as some of the more serious risks to health that can accompany them; today, we’ll list several ways that you can stop existing varicose veins from getting worse.

Exercise

Regular exercise will give you a wide range of health benefits, including general improvements to blood circulation that lies at the root of most varicose veins problems. Focused leg exercises can help ease situations where poor circulation in the legs results in swelling or itchy sensations, and cardiovascular (or aerobic) exercises like brisk walking, running, jogging, or swimming will increase your heart’s ability to circulate blood efficiently throughout the body.

Ideally, exercise should occupy at least 30 minutes, but even 10-minutes of physical activity once or twice a day will give lasting benefits over time. If you’re unable to engage in strenuous exercises, even regular walking will help you to boost your overall health.

Lose Weight

If you’re overweight (whether it’s by just a few pounds or if you’re classified as obese), losing weight will reduce the stress on your legs that contributes to developing varicose veins, as well as helping to stop new varicose veins from developing. Obviously, losing weight, whether through exercise or diet, also helps to improve your general health and reduces your chances of developing a host of other problems, including heart disease, diabetes, or strokes. 

Stop Smoking

Smoking may not be a primary cause of varicose veins, but smoking has a marked effect on blood vessel health and blood circulation in general. Stopping (or reducing) smoking will greatly assist you in improving your overall health and make it much easier to increase the amount of exercise you perform.

Avoid Lengthy Inactivity

Standing still or sitting for extended periods helps blood pooling and is a significant cause of the blood circulation problems that lead to varicose veins. Try hard to break up long periods when you’re inactive by going for a short walk, stretching, and by changing your posture. Sitting with your feet elevated will help blood flow away from your legs and is recommended as a way to counteract lengthy periods spent standing up.

Avoid Tight Clothing

Anything that restricts blood flow is to be avoided, and that includes tight clothing, especially when it places extra pressure on or around your legs. High heels can also restrict blood flow around the ankles, with similar negative results. Specialized support hose can actually help improve blood circulation by applying pressure evenly around the ankles, resulting in improved blood circulation in the rest of the legs.

Wear Sunscreen

Wearing sunscreen to reduce varicose veins might seem like an unlikely piece of advice, but it’s actually quite reasonable. Excessive UV rays from sunlight can damage collagen fibers that help form the walls of blood vessels that lay close to the surface, which in turn can result in spider veins developing. Light-complexioned people are especially prone to this form of skin damage. 

Your Laser Skin Care

Your Laser Skin Care is medically qualified and highly experienced — we offer a full range of services, including a full diagnosis of the cause of your varicose veins and advice on the best ways to treat the condition. We have extensive experience providing both laser vein therapy and Sclerotherapy treatments and a host of other non-invasive cosmetic procedures. Call us at (323) 525-1516 to schedule a free consultation or visit us online for more information.

 

Why Are Women More Prone to Varicose Veins?

Posted on February 5, 2021 by Ella Fedonenko

Although varicose veins can affect both men and women, women are between two and four times more likely to develop them – with up to half of the women eventually suffering from varicose and/or spider veins.

Hormone Levels and Varicose Veins

The circulation problems that lead to varicose veins affect both men and women, so why are women disproportionately more likely to develop them? It appears that changes in hormone levels can affect how well the one-way valves in our blood vessels work. These valves normally prevent blood from flowing “backward” inside our veins and also help blood flow against the force of gravity. They’re mainly located in our arms and legs. Our arteries, in contrast, do not contain one-way valves. 

The female hormone that has the main effect on one-way valves is progesterone. Aside from its main purpose of helping to regulate the menstrual cycle and the health of the uterus, it can also result in the blood vessel walls relaxing. This can have the unfortunate side-effect of disrupting normal blood flow and causing long-term damage to the blood vessel valves. Estrogen can also affect blood circulation, and hence women taking hormonal-based contraceptives can also see their chance of developing varicose veins increase. 

And as if this weren’t enough, normal pregnancies and ultimately menopause also disrupt hormone levels, with associated negative effects on blood vessel health.

Pregnancy

The temporary changes to a woman’s body during pregnancy will often result in varicose veins starting to develop – this can be due to the extra demands placed on the blood circulation system by the need to support a growing baby, but also by purely physical pressure that the baby places on interior veins. In most cases, pregnancy-induced varicose veins will go away following delivery.

Hereditary Causes

Whether due to hormonal problems or not, your chances of developing varicose veins are mainly determined by genetic (hereditary) factors. Over 75% of patients with varicose veins also have close relatives with similar problems. 

Reducing Your Chance of Developing Varicose Veins

Keeping active, eating a balanced diet, and avoiding smoking and excessive eating and alcohol consumption will increase your overall health and reduce your chances of developing varicose or spider veins. Unfortunately, they may not be enough to eliminate your chance of developing the problem, especially if you’re a woman.

Wearing tight clothes or high heels and/or spending extended periods standing or sitting can also impact your blood circulation, which (over extended periods) may result in blood vessel and valve damage. So try to wear comfortable loose clothing, and try to vary your body position, and generally keep active. Note that special support hose can help improve blood circulation – they’re not built the same as regular pantyhose and apply most pressure at the ankle.

Treatment

Non-invasive laser vein therapy and Sclerotherapy procedures are available. They can help to reduce the appearance of varicose or spider veins. Still, it’s also strongly recommended to seek qualified medical advice in case your varicose veins could be caused by other more significant health problems. Untreated varicose veins can lead to serious health risks, another reason to seek the opinion of an experienced doctor before deciding on any treatment. 

Your Laser Skin Care

Your Laser Skin Care professionals are medically qualified and highly experienced – we offer a full range of services, including a full diagnosis of the cause of your varicose veins and advice on the best ways to treat the condition. We have extensive experience providing both laser vein therapy and Sclerotherapy treatments, as well as a host of other non-invasive cosmetic procedures. Call us at (323) 525-1516 to schedule a free consultation or visit us online for more information. We’re happy to answer any questions you may have on the most effective way to address whatever cosmetic problems trouble you.

 

Can Certain Foods Improve Your Circulation?

Posted on December 18, 2020 by Ella Fedonenko

Poor circulation can be caused by any number of physical or physiological causes, and in turn, can be responsible for a wide variety of minor or major health problems. These range from cold, numb, or tingling feet, swelling in the feet, joint pain, and muscle cramping. It can also result in digestion problems and even premature cognitive impairment. Poor circulation can also be responsible for the accelerated development of visible varicose and spider veins.

Patients often overlook the benefits that a healthy and varied diet can bring to their general health, but many foods and supplements can have noticeable beneficial effects as a direct result of improving one’s general circulation. You can benefit from including the following items in your diet, whether or not you suffer from varicose veins or any of the other possible symptoms of poor circulation.

Ginger

Ginger is a traditional supplement known for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. It can help improve blood circulation, as well as reduce blood sugar levels. It’s effective when eaten raw, cooked, or used to infuse teas.

Cinnamon

Cinnamon contains several compounds that can help general health, including antioxidants. It has anti-inflammatory properties and can help reduce blood sugar levels. Also known to help relax blood vessels and help to increase blood circulation.

Peppers

Cayenne pepper, in particular, contains capsaicin, well known as a metabolic stimulant. It can help prevent plaque buildup in blood vessels. It can be used raw or cooked.

Onions and Garlic

Onions are a rich source of flavonoid antioxidants, helping to increase blood flow. Garlic also contains allicin, a blood vessel relaxant, and helps prevent plaque build-up.

Pomegranate

Another rich source of antioxidants and nitrates, pomegranates dilate blood vessels, thereby lowering blood pressure. 

Beets

Beets are rich in nitrates, which help the body relax blood vessel walls, stimulate blood circulation, and reduce high blood pressure readings.

Turmeric

The curcumin found in turmeric has strong anti-inflammatory properties and can also help relax blood vessel walls.

Leafy Green Vegetables

Green vegetables bring several health benefits; spinach, in particular, can help keep blood vessel walls flexible, in turn helping to lower blood pressure. 

Tomatoes and Watermelons

Both contain lycopene, an antioxidant linked to improved blood circulation.

Citrus Fruit

Citrus fruit is high in antioxidants and can help prevent blood clotting as well as improve circulation. Vitamin C also brings many other health benefits.

Berries and Grapes

Grapes and many berries are high in antioxidants, protecting blood vessel walls from damage and helping lower blood pressure.

Bananas

A rich source of potassium, bananas help to reduce levels of sodium in the body, increasing urine output and relaxing blood vessels, leading to lowered blood pressure. 

Fatty Fish

The omega-3 fatty acids found in many oily fish bring several benefits, including improved heart function and circulation. Fish with high oil concentrations include mackerel, herring, salmon, and trout. 

Dark Chocolate

The high levels of flavonoids found in dark chocolate can help stimulate blood circulation, in addition to other health benefits. In particular, choose chocolate containing at least 70% cocoa.

Nuts

Many nuts bring health benefits. Walnuts, in particular, are rich in alpha-linolenic acid, an omega-3 type fatty acid that protects blood vessel elasticity, leading to lowered blood pressure. Almonds are also high in antioxidants, helping to improve blood circulation.

Your Laser Skin Care

Your Laser Skin Care can help advise you on the most appropriate non-invasive procedure to help you achieve your cosmetic goals. We’re very experienced and medically qualified and can provide you with advice on how best to combine dietary changes with any of the wide range of procedures that we can perform. We’re happy to answer any questions you may have on the most effective ways to address whatever cosmetic problems trouble you, including helping to identify the underlying causes. We pride ourselves on offering the most effective (and cost-effective) ways to help you achieve your cosmetic goals. Call us at (323) 525-1516 to schedule a free consultation or visit us online for more information.

 

Common Varicose Vein Myths

Posted on September 11, 2020 by Ella Fedonenko

Continuing our recent focus on varicose veins, we’re moving to try to dispel several of the more commonly encountered varicose vein myths. Given the potential long-term problems associated with untreated varicose veins, these are well worth tackling.

Varicose Veins are Just a Cosmetic Problem

Varicose veins are, without question, a cosmetic problem in almost every case. However, given the range of possible health problems that can be responsible for causing the condition, and the possible health effects that can result if varicose veins are allowed to develop without treatment, they absolutely also have the potential to cause significant long-term health problems.

As to the worst-case health problems that can be caused by varicose veins – deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolisms are two that should definitely get your attention.

Early diagnosis and treatment can not only help you avoid developing the cosmetic problem that varicose veins can become, but can also help you minimize or even avoid associated long-term health problems

Varicose Veins are Primarily a Problem for Elderly Women

Elderly women are the group most likely to develop varicose veins, but they’re certainly not the only group that’s susceptible. Around a third of adults will eventually develop varicose veins in some form, and men are certainly also vulnerable. 

Furthermore, although age is generally a significant factor, varicose veins are not confined to the elderly. They can develop at far younger ages, and can certainly start to become a problem in your 20’s, 30’s, or 40’s.

Crossing Legs Causes Varicose Veins

Varicose veins can be caused (or exacerbated) by several factors. People with sedentary jobs are vulnerable, as are those who spend extended periods standing. Family history can be a factor, as well as carrying excess weight. The common factor is their tendency to disrupt normal blood circulation and cause blood to pool in the legs. 

Although it might seem that crossing one’s legs could cause blood circulation problems, this is typically not the case. Still, spending long periods with your legs crossed could lead to back pain, and even spending too much time sitting could eventually contribute to worsening circulation. Moderation in all things!

You Only Need to Worry about Visible Varicose Veins

Varicose veins are more likely to develop close to the surface. It’s certainly true that varicose veins in this region are more likely to be visible, and thus regarded as cosmetic problems. But varicose veins can also develop deeper beneath the skin and are less likely to be noticed, especially if you’re overweight. If you experience unusual pain in the legs, especially if this continues, you should definitely be evaluated by a doctor.

The Only Effective Treatment is Surgery

This used to be the case, but we now have access to both minimally and non-invasive techniques that can address many of the cosmetic aspects of varicose veins, including Sclerotherapy and laser vein therapy. Your doctor should be consulted as to the factors that may have been responsible for you developing varicose veins – it’s possible that you might require more treatment than simply resolving the visible component of varicose veins. 

Varicose Veins will Always Return after Treatment.

It’s not possible to give a blanket answer to this question, although it’s certainly not inevitable that varicose veins will return after treatment. Your doctor can advise you on lifestyle changes that will reduce the chances of their recurrence.

Your Laser Skin Care

Your Laser Skin Care is medically qualified and experienced – we can provide you with a full range of services, including full diagnosis of the cause of your varicose veins, advice on the best ways to treat the condition, and pointers on how to avoid them returning after treatment. We have extensive experience providing both laser vein therapy and Sclerotherapy treatments, as well as a host of other non-invasive cosmetic procedures. Call us at (323) 525-1516 to schedule a free consultation or visit us online for more information.

 

Are Varicose Veins a Health Risk?

Posted on September 4, 2020 by Ella Fedonenko

Varicose veins are visible symptoms of poorly functioning valves that allow blood to circulate in the “wrong” direction. The immediate result is increased pressure on blood vessels walls, leading to damage and weakening of the blood vessels, resulting in the twisty and enlarged veins that characterize the condition.

Common Causes 

Varicose veins can be caused by a variety of different medical conditions that can affect blood circulation, including genetic predisposition in some families, obesity, pregnancy, extended periods of sitting or standing, and even smoking.

Minor Complications

Poor blood circulation can increase the pressure on the skin, often resulting in local bleeding, and in some cases, the formation of sores. These are known as venous or varicose ulcers and typically form on the sides of the lower leg. Sores in this area are often slow to heal and can also become infected if left untreated.

Potentially Serious Complications

Although severe complications from varicose veins are rare, they can lead to some potentially far more unpleasant problems. 

The first complication is the development of blood clots in veins close to the skin surface. The chance of developing blood clots significantly increases when blood circulation is disrupted, and blood starts to pool. 

If blood clots are allowed to develop in deep veins, typically in the thighs or lower legs, the result can be deep vein thrombosis. This can result in leg pain or swelling, but may not be associated with any symptoms. It’s a far more serious condition, however.

Ultimately, if left untreated, blood clots can become dislodged and travel through the body. If they migrate to the lungs, they can result in blocked arteries, known as pulmonary embolism. This is a severe condition that can result in chest pain and shortness of breath.

Treatment

The above should have convinced you to take the development of varicose veins seriously. The good news is that treatments are available to help address varicose veins’ development, even in their early stages. You should start by consulting a qualified doctor to establish if your varicose veins are merely cosmetic, or if they’re the result of a more serious condition.

When no serious underlying medical conditions exist, there are non-invasive or minimally-invasive treatment options, including Sclerotherapy and Laser Vein Therapy. Early treatment will also greatly reduce your chances of developing more serious complications afterward.

Your Laser Skin Care

Your Laser Skin Care is medically qualified and experienced – we can provide you with a full range of services, including a complete diagnosis of your varicose veins’ cause and advice on the best ways to treat the condition. We have extensive experience providing both Laser Vein Therapy and Sclerotherapy treatments and a host of other non-invasive cosmetic procedures. Call us at (323) 525-1516 to schedule a free consultation or visit us online for more information.

 

Healthy Foods for Varicose Veins

Posted on June 12, 2020 by Ella Fedonenko

Perhaps you’re very careful to moisturize, you don’t smoke, you apply sunscreen religiously, and you may even use dermal fillers and Botox to repair any wrinkles that you’ve developed. However, the chances are that you still do several things regularly that may make your wrinkles worse instead of better. 

Here are a few of the things that many of us do on a regular basis, that make our wrinkles worse:

Pulling Your Skin When Applying or Removing MakeUp

It’s natural to stretch your skin when applying or removing makeup, but pulling on the delicate skin on our faces, especially around the eyes, can cumulatively lead to various problems, including puffiness, broken blood vessels, lost skin elasticity, and eventually wrinkles. Use facial pads to pat away your makeup, instead of wiping it off – this simple act adds up to a lot over time.

Similarly, for those who wear contacts daily – try to limit the natural tendency to pull the skin to the side to facilitate inserting or removing your contacts.

Excessive Washing with Harsh Soaps

Soap works by stripping the natural oils from the skin, but this can leave your skin dehydrated and unprotected, and makes you much more prone to developing fine lines and wrinkles over time. Consider avoiding soap altogether, and switch to gentle skin cleansers, and be sure to use a moisturizer to replace lost fluids.

Regular Driving 

Even for those who use sunscreen, the cumulative effect of regular driving in our climate is that one side of your face is regularly exposed to far more sunshine than the other, just by virtue of being next to the car’s side window. 

Harmful UV rays are not blocked by the glass; consequently, wrinkles are more common on the left side of our faces. You can combat this by using higher SPF-rated sunscreen when driving, as well as by getting the side windows of your car tinted.

Sunglasses!

Many people avoid sunglasses, but they unconsciously compensate in bright sunlight by squinting to reduce light intensity and glare. 

Needless to say, scrunching your eyes regularly increases the chance of developing lines and wrinkles in the soft skin that surrounds our eyes. The solution? Wear sunglasses, and make sure you choose ones that also protect against harmful UV rays.

Sleeping On Your Front

Given the number of hours we spend asleep, it should not come as a surprise to learn that the position in which we sleep can have a large influence on our bodies. 

Sleeping with your face pushed into a pillow can eventually lead to developing fine lines and wrinkles; for those who habitually favor one side or the other, these wrinkles can be more developed on one side of your face. Sleeping on your back might avoid the problem, but for those who are not able or comfortable doing that, choosing low-friction pillowcases can also help.

Your Laser Skin Care

We’re highly experienced in administering dermal fillers, Botox, and a host of other non-invasive cosmetic procedures. We’ll be happy to schedule you a free consultation, at which we can present the full range of available solutions tailored to your specific needs, develop a custom treatment plan, and answer any questions you may have. 

Call us at (323) 525-1516 to schedule your free consultation, or contact us online for more information.