Healthy Living

Are Varicose Veins Genetic?

Are Varicose Veins Genetic?

Varicose veins can unfortunately can be something that one can have little control over, since it can be handed down through inheritance. If you had family members who suffered from this condition, the chances are high that you can get the condition as well. It is of great importance to be aware of the health factors of varicose veins, and how you can overcome them.


Factors that may Cause Varicose Veins

It is essential to be aware of the risk factors. For instance in the United States, 50% of people who are more than 50 years suffer from varicose veins. Varicose veins can greatly effect women, as well as men. There are hormonal changes in women caused by various factors such as pregnancy, menopause, and menstruation. They are believed to exacerbate causes of varicose veins. Obesity also increases the risk of developing varicose veins, regardless of gender. Another factor that can contribute to developing varicose veins is standing for a long time, hence the blood is not able to flow well in the veins.


Weak Valves

In the veins, there are usually small, one-way pipes, and they open so that blood can flow properly. These valves can be weakened, causing the veins to stretch. The blood may then flow back the way it came, since the valves are not functioning properly, causing the blood to clot in the veins making them enlarged and swollen.

The reason for the stretching of the veins and weakening of the valves is relatively unknown, and some people develop the condition without any attributing factors.


Increased risk

There are various factors that can heighten the risk of varicose vein development:

  • Age factor
  • Obesity
  • Gender
  • Pregnancy
  • Career
  • Genetics


Hereditary Factors

Heredity is one of the main factors that causes varicose veins. In fact, they contribute up to 80% of the disease. Structural and metabolic factors are prime contributors in heredity.


Overcoming such Factors

Maintaining healthy weight can contribute to varicose vein prevention. Weight can also be due to hereditary factors, making weight management even more important. In doing so, you will be reducing the likelihood of suffering from varicose veins. If you come from a family with a history of varicose veins, it is recommended that you are on a diet low in sodium for proper retention of fluid. Doing exercises can also help reduce the chances of suffering from varicose veins since there will be increased blood flow through the whole body. Standing for a long time and sitting should be avoided, and the legs should be elevated above the heart when resting. 

Maintaining General Health

If you come from a family that has a history of suffering from varicose veins, it is important that you consult with your family doctor, or someone who specializes in veins.  Proactively making lifestyle choices like exercising regularly is important to your health, and to the prevention of varicose veins.