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Beginners Guide: What Are Compression Socks?

Introduction- What Do Compression Socks Do?

Compression socks (compression stockings, compression sleeves, etc.) are used in the treatment of different conditions, including deep vein thrombosis (DVT), lymphedema, varicose veins, chronic venous insufficiency, edema, and can have beneficial effect in the prevention of pregnancy-related complications (volume variations in standing and sitting in a pregnant woman), as well as preventive effect for post-thrombotic syndrome in patients that had deep venous thrombosis. In patients at risk of developing deep venous thrombosis, the compression socks are recommended in order to help prevent the occurrence of blood clots. These compression stockings can have a beneficial effect when worn during running and hiking, in order to improve circulation and give a more fulfilling sports experience.

Why Wear Compression Legwear?

Wearing compression socks can help to alleviate a feeling of heaviness in the legs to help reduce present edema in the legs and also to improve blood flow in the legs for better leg health. Once you become knowledgeable of putting on these socks, you gain agility in putting them on, and once you get into the routine of wearing them, the whole process becomes routine, and only the health benefits remain.

How Do They Work?

When the compression socks are worn correctly, they help the venous and muscle systems of the legs better pump the venous blood from the legs back towards the heart to accelerate better blood flow. The calf muscle usually helps with this task, and the surface veins of the legs have valves that help with the normal (towards the heart) direction of the venous blood. In this, the exerted pressure help with the normal venous compression of the blood in the right direction against gravity. Most commonly, the compression stockings are prescribed to both legs, with rare occasions of recommended use of compression stockings on only one leg.

Who Benefits From Wearing Them?

Athlete wearing a pair of legwear

It is reasonable to ask ourselves if everyone needs to be wearing compression socks all the time, everywhere. Persons who need to wear the compression socks include persons who are on their feet for a long time during the day, persons who are stationary and sit for many hours during the day, persons who are undergoing travel during a given day, persons who feel they might have benefited during sports (especially runners), and persons with comorbidities, such as deep venous thrombosis and chronic venous occlusion. Furthermore, the stockings are sometimes prescribed as a postoperative recommendation of wearing compression socks, with an aim to reduce complications.

They Come in Different Lengths to Cater to Your Needs

The length of the compression socks themselves depends on the indication for the stockings as well as the ability to tolerate certain lengths of socks. The main groups include thing-level stockings and knee-high stockings. Knee-high socks are easier to tolerate by the user, as the power of compression sometimes comes at the cost of a little unpleasantness. The stocking length is very important, as it is absolutely necessary to wear the right length of stockings if indicated. For example, wearing knee-high stockings for the treatment of varicose veins in the thighs will have no therapeutic effect.

Choosing the Right Pair For Yourself

There are many types of compression legwear in the market like compression sleeves, stockings, tights, etc. They all are medically reviewed and proven to be efficient and effective to help in treating and preventing unhealthy leg diseases by promoting better blood flow in the lower legs. You can find them in the pharmacy or most commonly these days, online. There isn’t really a right or wrong answer as to which type or pair you should for because it’s a matter of preference. They come in a different category of compression level for non-medical conditions and medical conditions. Everyone benefits from wearing these magical medical devices but always read and weigh the information before choosing a pair for yourself either online or from the pharmacy.

When are They Right for Me?

There are many indications for using compression socks/stockings. Most important is to note that you don’t have to be diagnosed with medical conditions of poor leg diseases to have a positive effect from wearing compression legwear. Any person with swollen legs can have a clinical health benefit from wearing a low gradient of compression of the compression legwear. In the event of recent deep vein thrombosis, higher gradient compression socks would be recommended by your doctor. As much as wearing them can be used as a great preventive measure against medical conditions like the leg diseases mentioned above, ask your doctor a prescription if you start to face some symptoms that your fear might be a medical condition or health concern. Be safe than sorry guys!

Health Benefits for Pregnant Women by Wearing Them

Pregnancy has many challenges. One of them is the volume discrepancy that appears during a pregnant woman standing as opposed to sitting. The symptoms that arise from this volume discrepancy include painful or swollen feet, as well as a feeling of heaviness in the legs. A weakening of the vein walls happens during pregnancy and the use of compression stockings can help alleviate the pain and swelling of the legs and feet. It is medically proven that wearing compression legwear can help eliminate lower limb edema for pregnant women during the third trimester and prevent varicose vein thrombosis and DVT of lower limbs after delivery.

Combating Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)

Graphic of Deep Vein Thrombosis

Deep vein thrombosis (DVT), also known as deep venous thrombosis) is a serious and dangerous disease that requires anticoagulant therapy in the medicamentous treatment of a thrombus present in the deep venous circulation. Such patients have a long road of recovery, in that, other than a recommendation of rest and medicamentous therapy, it is common to have a recommendation made to wear the compression legwear as a crucial part of the therapy.

Who Should Not Wear These Socks?

Although the use of compression stockings holds great benefits, care should be taken in patients with heart failure, advanced peripheral arterial disease, advanced peripheral nephropathy, uncontrolled congestive heart failure, as well as localized lesions like oozing dermatitis. The benefits of using the stockings are weighed on a case-by-case basis by physicians. Generally, though, the presence of the advanced arterial peripheral disease is a contraindication for use of circulation legwear as the wearing them would further compromise the arterial flow of blood distally.

Are They Harmful?

What are the Side Effects of Wearing Them?

Some of the side effects of the use of the stockings are the intolerance of the use of the socks, as they sometimes cause some discomfort. Other than the side effects of skin itching, the appearance of calluses, as well as a tingling sensation of the skin while wearing them. That could be very well manifested into a health concern/medical conditions like skin infections or skin diseases. So, please browse and read the product information and check the materials used in manufacturing those socks before you make the purchase online. The purpose of it is to avoid potential allergic reaction and of course, you should always know what you are buying into.

Closing of These Amazing Socks

Go get a pair of them for yourself. They can really benefit your health!

We are already at the end of the articles and I hope this short but on-point article can help shine some light on why you should wear compression socks or any other type of legwear that functions under the same principle. I have to stress that wearing compression socks of the right compression pressure level for you is extremely important, more so than what styles/lengths of them you should go for as that is a matter of personal preference. So, dear readers, please consult a doctor at your nearest clinic and ask for a prescription if you are not sure about which level to go for! Last but not least, always browse and compare then read the product description when you are purchasing online. Otherwise, get them at the nearest store or pharmacy. Thanks for the read!