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How Long To Wear Compression Socks – Complete Answer!

Long hours of traveling, working, standing, or sitting cause some considerable damage to our legs. There is just mild tiredness at first; however, it gets serious after some time. The best way to know if your legs need some treatment or simple medical attention like pain relievers is to analyze how it affects your daily routine. For example, if your routine causes the same exertion for a more extended period like weeks or months, then it is not okay to take medication daily. This way, your body will get used to the painkillers, which is very harmful to otherwise good health.

funny dog meme

On the other hand, looking into some other useful options like wearing compression socks is one of the best ways to go about it. The compression makes blood circulation normal, which, in return, helps to relieve pain and fatigue from the legs. Hence, wearing hosiery for a whole day, starting from early morning till getting to bed, proves to be hugely beneficial while your irregular blood flow starts causing mild/severe health issues.

white hosiery

Is it okay to Use Compression Stockings all day?

The primary purpose of compression socks is only one, and that is to regulate abnormal blood flow. They are not directly responsible for the treatment of conditions like leg pain, fatigue, swelling, lymphedema, varicose or spider veins. It is the effect of the boost in blood circulation that provides relief to all of these medical conditions.

Hence, if you use them as a safe treatment for your health concerns, then it means that you’re helping the blood to flow in the right direction and reach the heart in time. This process leads to making things right while there is no pain in legs, thighs, or foot and zero occurrences of swelling or tangled veins.

 Using compression hosiery all day means two things:

  • Your blood circulation remains undisturbed from morning till night.
  • You can carry out small/big tasks without facing any trouble related to health.

Therefore, a doctor suggests using them from the time you get up until the time you go to sleep to remain pain-free the whole day. Some people use it for a short duration like while walking or running, but it is not only harmless but also useful to wear hosiery for an extended time.

What happens when you wear them while sleeping?

To understand this phenomenon, let us first get into some facts that describe how compression socks work.

  1. It consists of pressure.
  2. The blood needs to flow from the legs back to the heart, which makes the body perform naturally well.
  3. While a person uses them, the pressure allows the blood to flow in a regular motion.
  4. During blood circulation becomes normal, it helps relax the otherwise disturbed veins and arteries.

You don’t stand or sit while sleeping but lie down. Hence, while lying down, the blood does not need much of gravitational force to flow back to the heart in comparison to while you’re standing or sitting. Therefore, if you wear socks to bed, then the compression causes some adverse effects as the additional force might increase the normal blood pressure.

This is why medical experts do not suggest using them while sleeping.

Can or Can not?

Side effects

Compression hosiery is one of the best and harmless treatments for pain, edema, tangled veins, and other problems related to irregular blood flow. The pressure that stockings consist of does not involve anything that relates to medicine. This is why anyone can buy it without a doctor’s prescription, but only if the compression level is mild to firm and not severe.

A lot of the people have this misconception that using socks all the time makes your body accustomed to regulating the blood flow unnaturally. Whereas, there is nothing unnatural in them. The treatment is entirely non-medicated and does not cause any sort of harm unless the patient suffers from conditions like high blood pressure or peripheral vascular disease.

Also, it is best to carry them all day while working but not while sleeping because it might have damaging effects.

How do they help?

Compression socks are for everyone. From someone who daily struggles with mild pain in the lower leg to someone who suffers from a severe medical condition like lymphedema. The primary use of them is to provide relief from pain and discomfort that fatigue and excess physical/mental stress causes.

There are multiple applications of it, which includes:

  • Tiredness:

    If someone feels plain tired after a hard day at work or doing house chores, then using them from morning till night is the best way to prevent fatigue.

  • Edema:

    Edema is a condition in which there is excess fluid in the leg tissues. This causes some severe swelling, and it gets better only after some time of using them if there is little to no swelling.

  • Lymphedema:
    lymphatic

    Lymph is a fluid that flows in our lymphatic system. Hence, if lymph unnaturally gathers in leg tissues, then it causes a condition known as lymphedema. And they work wonders in its treatment.

  • Varicose/spider veins:

    Varicose/spider veins are other names for tangled veins that occur while the blood is unable to flow in the right direction and motion. Hence, during the blood struggles to flow towards the heart from the leg, the arteries and veins become messy.

  • Deep vein thrombosis:

    Most of the deep veins in a human body are in lower leg or thighs. Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a severe medical condition in which a blood clot forms in one of the deep veins causing some chronic pain and other health problems related to irregular blood circulation.

  • Pulmonary embolism:
    pulmonary embolism

    If a blood clot blocks one of the major arteries in the lung, then it is known as pulmonary embolism. It happens while the blood clot travels from the lower leg to the heart and gets stuck in the lung.

Tips and Tricks

helpful tips

If you’re using them for lengthy hours like from morning till night and do not take them off in between, then here are some useful tips to make it all work efficiently.

  • Compression hosiery comes in all forms.
  • Make sure to buy the type that suits your daily requirements the best. For example, thigh-high is best for athletes, whereas women are usually comfortable in pantyhose. Stockings are for everyone from someone with a desk-job to people who stand or walk a lot during the day.
  • It is better to consult with a doctor to know which level of compression suits your condition. However, if it is something as familiar as dull leg pain, discomfort, or mild swelling, then it is okay to use 8-15 mmHg.
  • Buy two pairs of compression socks if you’re using on both of your legs, but if you’re carrying only one, then a single pair will also do.

After Surgery

nurse helping patient

The use of compression socks after surgery is significant if:

  • The surgery involves giving general anesthesia to the patient.  
  • The surgeon operates on legs, hips, or thighs.
  • The doctor instructs the patient not to move and rest as much as possible.

The reason for these three conditions is that anesthesia causes swelling and pain after its effects are gone. Moreover, while the patient requires not to move the body for more time, then it causes the irregular motion of blood.

Post-workout Use of Compression Socks

Running is a lifestyle. Endurance training isn’t something that just happens. If a person decides to condition their body with overland exercise, they choose to put their body through a unique type of stress. Fortunately, this stress is very beneficial.

There is no doubt, however, that far-distance training can take its toll on the integrity of particular body parts like the lower legs. Pain and body transformation is a facet of becoming a better athlete. Still, there are ways to make the conversion easier. Compression socks for running are one of them.

Many runners encounter the problem of how long should we use them and other specialized articles of clothing. If compression helps to protect active legs, can’t the protection last beyond workout sessions?

The answer is yes, but for how long?

High compression gear for running is comfortable overall because of several factors. These include,

  • Proper compression grades that do not cause muscle fatigue.
  • Restriction bands that help remain physically and mentally fit.
  • Construction using materials that are comfortable and versatile.

Training gear with compression is different from medical compression gear because of material blends. A combination of Nylon and Spandex fibers make sports gear. This type of mixture is terrific in that it retains strength, regardless of how powerful the stretch is. It also keeps its original form after being worn many times. Medical compression gear is much less forgiving, and it requires replacing regularly.

Do you ever, as a running athlete, ask yourself, “How long should I wear compression stockings?” You might be surprised to learn that it is more then you think.

The best compression socks optimize blood circulation during workouts. Though the idea is to prevent negative blood pooling, it does not help achieve results through overly tight restrictions. Socks with a medium value, a proper material blend, and a good fit are best to wear after finishing a run.

The right way to Use

If you’re feeling discomfort while using compressions hosiery, then it is probably due to the reason that you’re not doing it right. There is no right way to use them instead of keeping in mind things like not folding from the top. However, if they do not fulfill their purpose, then make sure that you’re not doing anything wrong. For example:

  • The size is not suitable for your calf or thigh because it is either too tight or too loose.
  • The material of it is not ideal for your skin type, and it is causing allergic reacting.
  • Your feet and leg sweat a lot while using them.
  • The swelling does not stop.
  • Gathers form on the top of the socks because they’re too loose.
  • They are immensely difficult to wear.

Therefore, if you’re not getting satisfactory results after using them, then make sure to look into these facts to overcome the issue causing it.

Advantages and disadvantages

Advantages:

  • It prevents the formation of blood clots.
  • Compression Socks relieves pain.
  • It regulates blood circulation.
  • They can be beneficial in preventing heart failure.
  • Decrease swelling.

Disadvantages

  • Mild itching.
  • Discomfort because of inappropriate size.

Do they increase blood pressure?

person relaxing at home

No, they are not responsible for increasing blood pressure. The primary function of it is to give relief to the arteries and veins that struggle with flowing the blood freely back to the heart. If the patient experiences high blood pressure after wearing socks, then it is probably because your body does not need that level of compression. And the problem requires some other kind of medical attention.