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THREAD VEINS: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Understanding the condition and ultimately finding out 'How to get rid of Thread Veins'.



THREAD VEINS: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Sometimes known as spider or broken veins, thread veins are small prominents veins that appear just below your skin surface, commonly on your face and legs. They tend to branch and give a spidery sort of pattern hence their common name. Thread veins are completely harmless.

Thread veins can be more visibly ageing than lines and wrinkles, leading many people to take action to remove them. These are very common, especially in people in their 40s, 50s and 60s. Almost all women will experience thread veins at some point in their life and they are usually associated with underlying vein problems.


A number of factors contribute to the appearance of thread veins on your skin, but they are all related fundamentally to placing pressure on capillaries and finer veins, resulting in damage or expansion. These factors include:

  • Genetic inheritance 
  • Ageing
  • Sedentary lifestyle 
  • Leg injuries 
  • Sun-damage 
  • Obesity 
  • Alcohol 
  • Smoking
  • Hormonal changes


You may have thread veins if you see or feel any of the following conditions:

  • An uncomfortable feeling of heaviness in your legs
  • Swelling
  • Rash
  • Throbbing, cramping, or aching
  • Itching around the veins

These symptoms often worsen after prolonged sitting or standing. You may also develop a brown discoloration of the skin and skin ulcers.


There are some steps you can take to reduce your chances of getting thread veins. These can also help you ease your discomfort from the ones you already have:

  • Wear elastic support stockings and avoid tight clothing that constricts your legs.
  • Avoid wearing high heels for long periods of time.
  • Eat a low-salt diet rich in high-fiber foods.
  • Wear SPF 30 (Sun Protection Factor) lotion to protect your skin.
  • Exercise regularly to improve your leg strength and circulation.
  • Avoid crossing your legs for long times when sitting. You may injure your legs that way.
  • Lift your legs when resting as much as possible.
  • Don't stand or sit for long periods of time.


Can spider veins go away on their own?

Usually, spider veins disappear on their own after a few months, but several home remedies can speed up the process.

Can you get thread vein treatment on the NHS?

When it is for cosmetic reasons you usually have to pay for thread vein treatment to be done privately, unless you have leg ulcers, swelling or skin discolouration.

Will fake tan cover thread veins?

It is better not to tan your thread veins because with time they can get matted and as the thread veins break down, blood will extravasate causing brown discoloration of the skin.



Oranges provide Vitamin C, which is very beneficial for the treatment of thread veins as it strengthen your blood vessels and improve the circulation of blood. It also has antioxidant that helps protect the tissues from damage. Eat oranges everyday on a regular basis. 


It helps improve your blood circulation and also helps break up fibrin, a blood protein that builds up in areas where your veins are injured. Cut a piece of ginger root into small pieces. Add the ginger slices to approximately 2 cups of boiling water. Simmer for 10 minutes, strain, add honey and drink it. If possible, drink this tea 2 or 3 times a day.​

Horse Chestnut

This herb is very effective in reducing the discomforts of thread veins and other venous problems. It has also anti-inflammatory and anti-swelling properties. Apply horse chestnut gel externally on the affected area twice, every day.  You can also take horse chestnut supplements but consult your doctor before for the correct dosage.


Although there are a variety of treatments to remove or reduce your thread veins, it is recommended you consult an expert practitioner who will advise you of the best option for your individual case.

Specialist Clinical Products

There are a vast range of clinically proven, patented products you can find such as creams and lotions to be topically applied to your skin to alleviate the redness caused by thread veins.

Laser Therapy

The most effective proven treatment for thread veins is laser therapy, which removes unwanted veins using brief pulses of laser light. The laser works safely and only on the thread veins, leaving your surrounding skin unharmed. You may experience some bruising or swelling after treatment, but this should end within 72 hours. You can have this treatment on most areas of your face, neck and legs. There is often a visible reduction in unwanted veins by as much as 75 per cent with one to three treatments and the results are permanent.
Find out more about the laser therapy treatment for your legs or face



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