Spider Veins on Ankles: Why Do I Have Them?

hand rubbing a painful ankle to illustrate spider veins on ankle
October 15, 2022 0 Comments

Even if spider veins on ankles are a common problem and generally not serious, we understand you probably find them bothersome and unattractive. That’s completely normal. And the internet search engines prove many are searching for answers to this question – and others connected to it.

So, in this article, we’ll answer all those questions so you can decide what to do next:

  • What do spider veins on ankles mean?
  • What causes spider veins on my ankles? Why do I have them?
  • Are spider veins on ankles common?
  • When should I worry about spider veins?
  • What happens if I don’t treat the spider veins?
  • How can I prevent spider veins?
  • How do I get rid of spider veins on my ankles?

What Do Spider Veins on My Ankles Mean?

They mean that you have some broken blood vessels that have formed just under the skin. They’re small, thin, often red or purple, and look like a spider web. They often appear on the face and legs, but they can also appear in other areas of the body such as ankles and feet.

Because they’re not meant to be there, they’re sending you a helpful message that it’s time to consider what to do about them!

What Causes Spider Veins on My Ankles? Why Do I Have Them?

Damaged valves in your veins don’t work well to encourage blood to flow normally back to your heart. This leads to the creation of varicose veins and spider veins.

In addition, when it comes to feet and ankles, slower blood circulation and the increased pressure that we put on our vein valves every day (due to gravity) can lead to swollen feet – which can contribute to the formation of spider veins on ankles.

There are a variety of factors that can increase your risk of developing spider veins, such as:

  • Family history
  • Age
  • Pregnancy
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Gender
  • Obesity
  • Sun damage
  • Standing or sitting for long periods of time
  • Hormonal changes
  • Blood clots

In a moment, we’ll answer the question about how to help prevent the problem developing!

Are Spider Veins on Ankles Common?

Absolutely! We said up top you weren’t the only one! Spider veins on ankles and feet are a very common issue that many people in the United States experience: More than 40% of women have some form of varicose or spider vein issue.

Women are more prone to developing spider veins than men, and this risk increases with age for both men and women.

When Should I Worry About Spider Veins?

While spider veins are generally harmless, spider veins on ankles can be a sign of serious chronic venous insufficiency. If you’re experiencing the following symptoms, don’t hesitate to get in touch with your healthcare practitioner:

  • You suffer from severe leg or ankle pain
  • The leg, ankle, and/or foot is swelling or feeling very heavy
  • Your spider veins are more swollen or red than usual
  • The veins are very warm to the touch or itchy
  • There are sores or rashes around the ankle or on the leg
  • Veins are spontaneously bleeding

What Happens if I Don’t Treat the Spider Veins?

If spider veins on ankles are left untreated for too long, they can lead to serious symptoms and conditions that can interfere with your quality of life – or even be damaging to your health.

Untreated spider veins can lead to:

  • Frequent severe pain, feeling of heaviness, and muscle cramps in the leg, ankle, or feet
  • Skin bruising and bleeding easily when injured
  • Skin ulcers
  • Cellulitis
  • Deep vein thrombosis
  • Phlebitis (aka blood clots)
  • Lymphedema

None of this is meant to scare you. But it is perhaps intended to help you make a decision to at least consult a specialist about your spider veins!

Paradoxically, leaving untreated spider veins for too long can also make you less active and more prone to living a sedentary lifestyle. Which is the opposite of what we should do if we want to get rid of spider veins!

How Can I Prevent Spider Veins?

As we mentioned when talking about causes, family history, being pregnant, being a woman (women are more prone to developing spider veins), or getting older are some of the factors that increase the risk of spider veins on ankles and cannot really be controlled.

But we also said there were things you could do to help prevent the spider veins getting worse or even appearing. So, here are some things you can control:

  • Make sure you have an active lifestyle by doing at least 30 minutes of exercise every day. By working the muscles in your legs you can prevent the formation of spider veins.
  • If you’re overweight, lose the extra pounds to relieve the pressure on your blood vessels and veins and prevent further development of the spider veins you have.
  • Avoid sitting or standing for a long time. If you have no choice, for example because of your job, make sure to at least take a break every half hour to walk around or elevate your legs for around 15 minutes. Walking will make your muscles move while elevating your legs will relieve the pressure.
  • Wear compression stockings or socks to apply upwards pressure on the veins and improve blood flow. This not only helps prevent the formation of further spider veins but also reduces swelling and the risk of blood clots.

How Do I Get Rid of Spider Veins on My Ankles?

If spider veins developed during your pregnancy, the good news is they’re temporary and should disappear within a few months after birth!

Otherwise, already-formed spider veins will not go away on their own, but they can be easily removed during in-office procedures and with minimal downtime. Spider veins are very small and do not require surgery. The most common procedures are:

1. Sclerotherapy

This is a quick and painless treatment for spider veins on ankles. A solution is injected into the spider veins causing them to close off the blood flow. The vein collapses and gradually disappears by being absorbed into the body. This procedure is virtually painless and leaves no scars.

2. Laser treatment

This is a non-invasive procedure perfect for spider veins. The laser beam focuses on the damaged veins and causes the blood to coagulate, thus destroying the vein. Just like in the case of sclerotherapy, the destroyed vein is absorbed by the body.

Let Denver Vein Help You With Annoying Spider Veins!

We understand how unsightly and uncomfortable spider veins on ankles can be. Here at Denver Vein Center, we have more than 15 years of experience in vein removal and we’d love you to call in so we can help you look, feel, and live better with healthier legs! Contact us today!

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Spider Veins on Ankles: Why Do I Have Them?
Find out the answer to all your questions related to the common internet search about spider veins on ankle so you can decide what to do, if anything.