Factors, which increase the risk of developing venous disease and varicose veins include;
- Venous disease becomes more common as we age with nearly one in every two people over the age of 50 being affected by this condition. As we get older, our veins begin to lose their elasticity, which causes the valves inside them to malfunction further progressing the disease process.
- This condition is extremely common and often missed diagnosed, affecting nearly 25% of women and 15% of men. Research suggests that Women are more likely to be affected because females’ hormones promote relaxation of the vein walls, making the valves more susceptible to insufficiency.
- If either your mother or father have suffered from this condition, there is roughly a 60% chance you will develop the disease process, if both parents were affected, your risk increases to an 89% chance of developing venous disease.
- The amount of blood in a woman’s body increased when pregnant to help support her growing baby which can put an extra strain on her circulatory system. Additionally, research has shown that the increased hormone levels reached during pregnancy also cause the blood vessels to relax making the valves prone to reflux. As the uterus (womb) starts to grow, the additional pressure on the vessels in the pelvic region can lead to varicose veins.
- Research suggests that jobs, which require long periods of standing, may increase your risk for varicose veins. When you are standing for long periods of time, it is much more difficult for your body to recirculate blood from the extremities to the heart due to the increased force of gravity.
- Being severely overweight increases the pressure on your veins requiring them to work harder in order to recirculate blood back to your heart. This can put increased pressure on the valves making them more prone to reflux.