Why should you wear compression socks you may ask? Compression socks are no longer just solely a medical treatment for people with poor circulation or other problems in their legs. Today, everyone from athletes to pregnant women wear them. Here are some of the more common reasons people now wear compression socks.
1. During Pregnancy: If you have varicose veins or are at risk of developing them, your doctor might suggest you wear compression socks during pregnancy. Studies have shown that wearing the socks seems to improve blood flow, reduce swelling, and even prevent varicose veins from developing or getting worse.
2. Varicose Veins: Research shows the benefits of wearing compression socks for varicose veins might go beyond pregnancy. Researchers who reviewed seven studies with 356 participants noted that many people felt their symptoms improved if they wore the socks. They had less swelling and blood flow was better. Source found on: healthgrades.com
3. After Surgery or When Bedridden: The chance of developing painful, dangerous blood clots in the legs goes up after surgery. It also goes up if you are bedridden for any reason. To help prevent these clots, doctors often prescribe compression socks. The stockings can improve blood flow in the legs. This reduces the risk of clotting while you aren’t as active as usual.
4. Leg Swelling: Leg swelling (edema) can stem from various medical conditions. For instance, issues like heart failure, kidney disease, and pregnancy can cause the body to retain fluids. This can lead to swelling in the legs. A serious problem like heart failure or kidney disease requires other treatments, but wearing compression socks might be a simple part of the plan to help address symptoms in the legs.
5. Deep Vein Thrombosis: Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is the development of a blood clot in a vein in the leg or pelvis. These clots can be quite painful. They also can cause serious complications, including pulmonary embolism if the clot travels to the lungs. Compression socks can help prevent DVT. And, if you’ve already had a DVT, wearing them can help relieve pain and prevent complications. Wearing compression socks while traveling is especially important. That’s because sitting for long periods of time on an airplane or in a car can make DVT more likely.
6. Post-Thrombotic Syndrome: One complication of DVT is post-thrombotic syndrome (PTS). This is discomfort and pain in the arm or leg that lingers after you’ve had DVT. If you have these symptoms, compression socks can provide relief. They might even help you resume some of your daily activities.
7. Athletic Performance: More and more athletes are putting on compression socks before competing. They believe the socks can do two things—improve performance and prevent injuries while running or participating in athletic events. If your blood flow is restricted in any way, you prolong the recovery time and increase the uncomfortable soreness you feel after a workout. It’s why everyone encourages you to stretch after a workout — to get that blood flowing back to your exhausted muscle. Compression socks can help promote that recovery, too.
8. You’re going on a long flight: You’ll be inactive and confined to a tight space for many hours, which increases the risk of blood clots. Research has shown that people who wear compression stockings during air travel are less likely to develop DVT or swelling in their legs.
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