Compression stockings have long been used to promote better blood circulation in individuals who are at risk for leg swelling and pain due to chronic health problems or recent surgery. However, they’ve recently been making headlines as more people begin to realize that they can help individuals beyond those who are pregnant or have varicose veins.
Compression stockings can alleviate pain for anyone who is active. Their users range from Olympic athletes to anyone who must sit or stand for long periods of time such as flight attendants and warehouse employees. While it may seem strange to think that a pair of hosiery or socks could do so much, understanding the science behind how compression stockings boost blood circulation in your body can help you to see the benefits of incorporating them into your lifestyle.
The Science Behind Compression Wear
Your circulatory system begins with your heart pumping blood throughout the body via its arterial system. As the blood travels, it delivers electrolytes, oxygen and nutrients to muscles and organs before it returns to the heart through the venous system. While this system typically works fairly smoothly, minor issues with the venous system can generate problems. When the blood returns to the heart through your veins, it must flow against gravity. Issues such as weak valves or a sluggish blood flow can cause it to pool and lead to swelling and inflammation. Compression stockings apply pressure to these areas that stop blood from pooling in the legs and feet so that it flows back up to the heart. When this happens, many of the symptoms associated with venous insufficiency are alleviated.
Times When Compression Stockings Are Beneficial
There are many reasons why blood flow to the legs and feet may be restricted. In some cases, this is caused by an obvious physical reason such as needing to sit at a desk for long periods of time as an office worker or student. Pregnancy is another time when many people experience the symptoms of venous insufficiency due to an increased amount of blood flow and restrictions on the main arteries and veins. People with health conditions that reduce blood circulation such as diabetes will also find that compression stockings can help to improve blood flow. Athletes who engage in long, arduous workouts such as running marathons also find that adding compression garments to their gear reduces the fatigue and swelling that often restricts with their competitive edge.
Ways to Stylishly Include Comfort Wear in Your Wardrobe
Although venous disorders and pregnancy leg swelling are fairly common amongst the population, you may still prefer to avoid advertising your discomfort to the world. Fortunately, you have options for seamlessly including compression stockings into your wardrobe. First, begin by finding the right level of compression and size to fit your needs so that you know they will be comfortable. Then, look for stockings in your skin tone, or you can experiment with fun colors and patterns that look just like normal socks and tights.
Once you find the perfect pair of stockings, be sure to wear them during times when you expect leg pain and swelling such as before you go to work. This way, you can see the biggest results of boosting blood circulation in your body.
CONTRAINDICATIONS: Compression products should not be worn and are contraindicated if you have any of the following conditions: Severe arterial insufficiency, cutaneous infections, acute dermatitis, wet dermatosis, uncontrolled congestive heart failure, skin irritations, allergies to dyes.
This is only general information and is not meant for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical conditions. Always consult your physician or other health care provider about all health concerns, conditions, and recommended treatments.