The Truth About Broken Blood Vessels On Your Skin

We all know how to treat a blemish that pops up unexpectedly on our face. But what happens if you notice tiny red lines just under the surface of your skin? These "spider veins" are actually broken blood vessels, and are most often found on your face and legs (via Healthline). The good news is, they're not dangerous and in some cases can be prevented and treated.

Spider veins may not look great, but they're fairly common and don't cause any other health issues for people who have them. They're often genetic, so if you've got a family member that has broken blood vessels, it's possible you'll have them too (via MedicalNewsToday). Another common cause of broken blood vessels is exposure to the sun. Damage from UV rays can cause blood vessels to swell and move closer to the surface of the skin, making them more visible. And if you happen to have the common skin condition rosacea, which is caused by enlarged veins, it's likely you'll see spider veins pop up as well.

Tips to prevent and treat broken blood vessels

Other causes of broken blood vessels on your body include alcohol consumption, pregnancy, injuries, extreme weather changes, and even intense bouts of vomiting or sneezing. Wearing an appropriate sunscreen, avoiding alcohol, and keeping your skin cool during hot weather may help you avoid getting spider veins (via Healthline). If any of these causes have already led to the appearance of spider veins, there are some steps you can take to help make the tiny red lines less noticeable.

MedicalNewsToday offers some home remedies that may help in decreasing the appearance of spider veins. When washing your face, for example, opt for cool or cold water instead of hot water. Hot water can actually cause blood vessels to swell and break, while cold water helps your blood vessels constrict. The same idea is behind the suggestion to use a cold compress on your face to help reduce the size of broken blood vessels, especially if you've been in the sun or heat. Certain topical treatments like arnica oil, aloe vera, and witch hazel may help to reduce redness caused by broken blood vessels. 

If your spider veins are especially bothersome, the outlet notes that there are other options, including prescription retinoid creams and laser treatments that can be done by a doctor to help reduce their appearance, and in some cases make them disappear.