FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What does compression therapy help with?
Ankle and foot compression products help with ankle sprains and swollen feet while hand and wrist compression sleeves help treat wrist injuries and hand muscle weakness, wrist arthritis, tendinitis, and carpal tunnel syndrome. Other conditions that greatly benefit from compression therapy are varicose veins, deep vein thrombosis, lymphedema, and orthostatic hypotension. Compression stockings have also proven efficient against morning sickness during pregnancy.
What are the benefits of compression therapy?
Compression therapy products and other related orthopedic supplies help improve blood flow and lower the risk of blood clots, prevent and reduce swelling associated with long periods of sitting or standing still, decrease dizziness and nausea, and help heal leg ulcers caused by diabetes, kidney failure, or high blood pressure. They also reduce recovery time and the chance of injury, relax the nervous system, and increase the range of motion.
What is cold compression therapy and how does it work?
Cold compression therapy combines compression with cryotherapy and aims to reduce pain and swelling after injuries or orthopedic surgery. It usually employs cold compression wraps and is particularly useful for sprains and pulled muscles and ligaments. Cryotherapy lowers the temperature of the injured tissue, reducing its metabolic rate, while compression bandages increase pressure on the tissue to prevent swelling. By combining these two healing principles, the tissue cools down faster, making cold compression therapy more efficient than compression or icing alone.
How often can you use a leg compression machine?
A leg compression machine is a device that uses pneumatic compression to help prevent blood clots in deep leg veins. These devices are long boots that act much like blood pressure cuffs, squeezing your legs and increasing blood flow. They can be used on a daily basis but, unlike compression socks and stockings that can be worn for 18 hours a day, they should not be used more than one hour at a time. In fact, most designs have a 20-minute automatic shut-off function, to make sure you don't fall asleep and overuse them. You can use a compression machine whenever you need to relax after a long day of walking, standing, flying, or wearing high heels.
Can I wash compression socks, stockings, and leggings in the washing machine?
Medical compression socks, leggings, and compression stockings can and should be washed at least every two days. To make sure you care for them properly, use mild detergents or dish soap, and never add softener or bleach. Hand washing is preferred and the next best option is the gentle cycle of your machine with the warm water setting (90-100°F). It is best to wash them inside out and note that they should never be put in the dryer or microwave. To dry them faster, you can roll them gently in a fluffy towel before hanging them to dry.
How tight should a compression wrap be?
Compression wraps and bandages should feel snug but you must avoid wrapping them too tightly, as they may end up cutting off blood circulation. Tightness isn't the only thing to consider when using compression bandages — the width of the wrap matters too and it should be appropriate for the body part being treated. If a compression wrap is too narrow it can cut blood flow and if it is too wide it may not provide adequate compression. Signs that your compression socks or bandages are too tight include a tingling sensation in your legs or toes, discoloration, or leaving impressions and red markings after taking them off.
How can I treat DVT and lymphedema with compression therapy products?
You can treat symptoms of leg lymphedema and deep vein thrombosis with compression stockings, pantyhose, or leg sleeves. These compression garments squeeze your leg and improve blood flow, forcing it upward from the ankles. Compression socks and leggings have the same effect, easing swelling, discomfort, and blood buildup. Arm lymphedema can be treated with compression arm sleeves and other affected body parts can be wrapped in compression bandages by a trained specialist.
What are ankle compression socks used for?
Ankle compression socks put pressure on the veins in your legs and feet. This can help keep your legs from getting tired and achy, can ease any swelling, and prevent and treat spider and varicose veins. It relaxes your muscles and even helps your heart health as your blood flow improves. It can also diminish dizziness when you stand up. The only drawback of wearing compression socks is that they may cause skin irritation and itching.
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The information, including but not limited to text, graphics, images, charts, and any other material on this site, is intended for informational purposes only and does not take the place of medical guidance provided by your physician. No information on this site is intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Please consult a qualified medical professional about your condition or circumstances before undertaking a new healthcare regimen.