Varicose veins are enlarged blood vessels caused by weakening vein walls. For most, they are simply a cosmetic problem, but more advanced varicose veins can cause legs to ache or swell. To find out if you are at risk, consider the following – each can increase the risk of developing varicose veins:
- Genetics. Varicose veins tend to run in families.
- Age and weight. The older you are and the more you weigh, the higher your risk.
- Hormonal changes. Among women, hormonal changes associated with puberty, pregnancy and menopause can increase the risk of developing varicose veins, as can birth control pills and other drugs containing estrogen and progesterone. (The good news is veins that enlarge during pregnancy tend to shrink back after giving birth.)
- Sitting position. If you tend to cross your legs while sitting, you may increase your chances of developing varicose veins.
Don’t miss tomorrow’s Daily Tip, when we discuss natural ways to prevent varicose veins.
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