FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How does compression help with the healing process?
Compression bandages can help to heal chronic injuries by pushing out exudate while encouraging blood flow to speed healing. Compression can also help reduce inflammation. Ultimately, adding firm pressure to an injury can stop blood loss, remove excrements quicker, and encourage the body’s own repair mechanisms to work towards healing the injury.
How do you wrap your ankle with an elastic bandage?
To properly wrap your ankle with an elastic bandage, begin with the bandage in a roll. Put your foot at a 90-degree angle and start by wrapping the foot right below the toes, working your way toward the ankle. Next, go around the Achille’s tendon and up under the foot until you wrap around to the front again. Do this a second time to ensure the bandage is securely in place and secure with a pin or clip. The bandage should be firm and tight enough to keep the ankle from moving too much but not so tight that circulation is stopped. If your foot starts to turn blue or you lose feeling in it, loosen immediately.
How long can I safely wear an elastic bandage wrap?
A compression bandage like an elastic bandage should only be worn for the first 24 to 48 hours after injury. After that, the injury needs some air to breathe so it can heal. It can help prevent swelling in the initial day or two after a sprain but after that, it may do more harm than good and should be removed. You can also choose a gauze compression wrap if the injury only requires mild compression. This can vary by injury and by patient so be sure to check with your physician first to ensure you properly care for your injury.
What is the difference between self-adherent and non-adhesive compression wraps?
Self-adherent compression bandages act like tape but they do not actually stick to the skin. The material sticks to itself so you can compress a wound or injury and then seal the bandage in place without using a pin. A non-adhesive compression wrap will need to be secured with a pin at the end to keep the wrap in place. These may be more flexible to use for some patients.
What are absorbent compress dressings used for?
An absorbent compress can help absorb blood and pus that is being excreted by the cut or wound. The pressure will push these fluids out quicker and the absorbent compress can collect the liquid and wick it away from the healing wound and surrounding skin. Once the dressing becomes soiled, change it promptly to prevent the fluids from re-entering and infecting the incision or irritating the skin.
Can I sleep with a compression bandage on?
A compression bandage can be worn overnight but only within the first 24 to 48 hours after the injury. Prolonged use can lead to further injury or an inability to heal efficiently. Always check with your doctor about the amount and timing of compression for your specific injury.
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