How your age impacts your vein health
Age and Vein Health
Growing older brings enriching experiences and wisdom. The lessons learned as we age are invaluable. However there are some physical drawbacks to our bodies aging. Diminishing vein health as you get older is often overlooked and not as commonly thought of as heart disease, lung disease and brittle bones, but age is one of the biggest factors that leads to vein disease in the legs.
Age and Your Veins
Vein damage is cumulative and progressive, meaning it gets worse over time. According to the Society for Interventional Radiology, “varicose veins affect 1 out of 2 people age 50 and older, and 15% to 25% of all adults.” As the years go by, you lose muscle mass and strength. The stress on your body to support itself and it’s circulatory system wears your body down. It’s no secret that things that were painless and simple at 20 are much more difficult and strenuous at 50 or 60.
Venous blood flow in the legs is a bit different from other parts of the body. Since the lowest parts of the legs – the feet, ankles and lower legs – are so far from the heart, it is more difficult to pump that blood back up to become reoxygenated. It also has to fight against the downward pull of gravity. The veins have a way around this, though. First, tiny valves in the leg veins prevent blood from flowing backwards as it moves up towards the heart. Second, the muscles of the leg press against the veins during movement to squeeze the blood up the leg similar to a pump. As we age, these vavles become weak and malfunction, causing the blood to flow backwards and pool in the legs. This is referred to as chronic venous insufficiency (CVI). When the blood pools in the legs, it can cause the veins to stretch and bulge and leads to a host of other symptoms such as cramping, heaviness and aching in the legs. If left untreated, this condition can lead to venous ulcers especially in the elderly who may lead a more sedentary lifestyle or are bedridden.
Prevention and Treatment
The key to preventing leg vein problem is by reducing or removing the causes and risk factors. Of course factors such as age and family history cannot be changed but others can be avoided with minimal effort.
Some preventative measures you can take now include :
- Walk and move around as much as possible during daily tasks.
- Long walks as part of a daily exercise regimen.
- Stop cigarette smoking.
- Lose weight.
- Elevate the legs when sitting.
- Avoid standing or sitting for long periods of time or at least take short walks in between.
- Use compression stockings as prescribed by a doctor once the problem develops.
Exercise will help keep your body stronger by improving muscle function and increasing blood flow. Moderate exercise reduces stress, controls blood sugar levels and reduces excess weight gain that leads to obesity. Regular exercise is one of the best things for your circulatory system. Try starting a routine of getting outside for a walk in the crisp autumn air or hitting an indoor pool.
No matter your age, if you are dealing with vein disease, you should visit a vein specialist to assess your symptoms. Since vein disease is progressive, the only way to truly cure it is to seek professional treatment. Alpha Vein Clinic in Las Vegas offers the latest in minimally invasive vein procedures. Our physician, Dr. Sassan Kaveh can examine and accurately diagnose which particular veins can benefit from treatment and consult you on your options. Procedures are covered by most medical insurance companies including Medicare. Call us today at (702) 430-7661 and let us help you to get your leg veins back to perfect working order!
Alpha Vein Clinic
Vein Clinic Las Vegas
3150 N. Tenaya Way Ste. 400
Las Vegas, NV, 89128
(702) 430 7661
Dr. Sassan Kaveh
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