Do Spider Veins Go Away on Their Own?

A person touching their leg that has spider veins.

If you have purple, red, or blue spider veins on your legs or other parts of your body, you may hope they go away on their own. But is it possible for them to heal over time? Can spider veins go away on their own? Or do you need treatment?

There are some ways to prevent them from getting worse with lifestyle changes, but treatment is required for them to go away completely. Luckily, there are several non-invasive options available that can help. 

How Spider Veins Work

Spider veins are tree-like broken capillaries, arterioles, or venules called telangiectasias. They are sometimes referred to as thread veins or broken capillaries. Spider veins can happen anywhere on the body but are most common on the feet, legs, and face[1].

Spider veins are different from varicose veins which are damaged veins that bulge beyond the surface of the skin. Spider veins and varicose veins typically occur together, although you can have spider veins without varicose veins. 

The exact cause of spider veins is unknown. Hormonal changes, aging, injury, genetics, pregnancy, or connective tissue diseases may cause them. They’re also made worse by sitting or standing for long periods[2].

The Natural Progression of Spider Veins

Spider veins happen when capillaries become weak or damaged. Their appearance is connected to advancing age, pregnancy, certain lifestyle choices, or weight gain. Genetics also plays a role in the likelihood of having spider veins [3].

Different factors contribute to the progression of spider veins. As you get older, veins weaken, and the skin becomes thinner, worsening the appearance of veins. Weight gain, hormonal changes, or certain medical conditions can exacerbate their appearance. Additionally, prolonged periods of sitting or standing can make spider veins worse. 

Spider veins typically occur hand in hand with varicose veins as valves within the veins begin to weaken. Large varicose veins put pressure on smaller capillaries, causing them to expand. This is why spider veins are not just a cosmetic issue; they may be a sign of a larger vein problem that could lead to more significant health problems.

Do spider veins go away? Not typically. Occasionally, spider veins caused by pregnancy may improve in appearance once the baby is delivered. 

If left untreated, weak veins can eventually cause uncomfortable symptoms such as pain, heaviness, burning, aching, restless legs, and cramping. Advanced vein disease can lead to skin issues, such as rashes, ulcers, inflammation, and wounds. 

Tips to Prevent Worsening of Spider Veins

Rather than wondering if spider veins go away on their own, consider focusing on prevention. A few ways to help prevent spider veins from getting worse include:

  • Avoid sitting or standing for long periods. Stand up or move around every 30 minutes or so.
  • If you must stay seated or standing, do ankle and foot exercises periodically to encourage blood flow.
  • Exercise regularly to help support healthy circulation.
  • Eat a well-balanced, low-sodium diet to reduce the pressure on the veins.
  • Maintain a healthy body weight to reduce pressure on the veins.
  • Consider wearing compression socks, which put pressure on the legs, helping improve blood flow.

Preventative methods can help slow the progression of spider veins, but treatment is needed to help spider veins go away. 

When to Seek Help for Varicose Veins

Spider veins are not reversible, so if you want to remove them, you will need to seek treatment. Luckily, there are many minimally invasive treatments available to reduce their appearance. 

At Empire Vein Specialists, we specialize in several cutting-edge vein treatment procedures. 

These include: 

  • Sclerotherapy: This uses injections to close off damaged veins. This is the therapy of choice for spider veins that offers effective, permanent results.  
  • VenaSealTM: This procedure is typically used for varicose veins. A medical adhesive blocks off the affected veins and redirects the blood flow to healthier veins. It can be done right in our office and takes as little as 20 minutes. Empire Vein Specialists is the #1 provider of VenaSeal™ in the U.S.
  • ClosureFastTM: This uses radiofrequency (RF) to seal off affected varicose veins. This is less painful and has a faster recovery time when compared to traditional laser treatments.
  • Ambulatory phlebectomy: This is a varicose vein removal technique for veins close to the skin surface. 

There are many options to help you manage spider or varicose veins. Typically, sclerotherapy is the best therapy to help permanently remove spider veins.   

You may need more advanced treatments if you also have varicose veins.

You don’t have to live in discomfort due to veins. While prevention methods can help slow the progression of spider veins, treatment is required for them to go away completely. 

To learn about these treatments, schedule a free 15-minute consultation at Empire Vein Specialists. All of our physicians are board-certified vascular surgeons who specialize in helping permanently remove spider veins. Call 1-800-VARICOSE (1-800-827-4267) today to get started.