If you’ve ever been curious if compression socks are right for you, we’ve got everything you need to know about what compression socks can help with, who they’re good for, and how you can get started incorporating them into your routine.  

What Are Compression Socks?

If you’re new to the compression sock game, you might be wondering what exactly they are.  Simply put, compression socks are socks made from a tightly woven material that apply pressure on the legs, ankles, and feet.  Compression socks are typically made from a blend of nylon and spandex material and are measured by their mmHg, or millimeters of mercury.  The mmHg describes the compression level of the sock.  A sock with a mmHg higher than 25 is considered a medical grade.  Lower level mmHg socks are not considered medical grade and are useful for most everyone.  

What Can Compression Socks Help With?

In the past, the main wearers of compression socks were people with medical necessity.  In other words, people who suffered from medical conditions that prevented adequate circulation in their lower extremities.  Because compression socks were so successful in assisting these wearers, they became more mainstream and more and more people began to find them useful for other, more common ailments.  

Compression socks can help with tired legs and feet.  By wearing compression socks while at work or during physical activity, your legs are given additional support that assists them in circulation.  The veins in your legs are given an additional “boost” while sending the blood back up to the heart.  This decreases overall leg and foot fatigue and helps you keep doing what you want to do for longer.  

Compression socks can also assist in preventing swelling.  Many people experience water retention in the legs, feet, and ankles because of jobs that require lots of standing, physical activity that is particularly high impact, or other situations that cause excess fluid to build in the legs.  Wearing compression socks can prevent the collection of excess fluid in the legs by limiting the ability of the legs and feet to spread and retain the fluid.

Compression socks are also great for pregnant women or anyone who is at higher risk of varicose veins.  The compression offered by these socks prevents the blood vessels from expanding and becoming swollen and gnarled.  If varicose veins have already developed, wearing compression socks can support the legs and alleviate the pain caused by varicose vein syndrome.  

Where Can I Purchase Compression Socks?

Because compression socks were once only used by individuals with medical necessity, they were generally only sold by medical professionals and drug stores.  That didn’t leave much room for fashion or variety.  In fact, the compression socks of long ago came in stark white or solid black.  Today, you can find compression socks in a plethora of different styles, colors and designs.  You can buy compression socks from reputable online retailers.  A great company will offer not only different colors and designs but also different sizes and styles.  For instance, some wearers will only want a compression sock that covers their feet and ankles.  Many other wearers will want full support from their knees down.  There are plenty of varieties available for any activity or need. 

Compression socks are a great way to treat a multitude of lower extremity issues in a holistic and non-invasive way.  The application of moderate pressure to the calves, ankles and feet prevent swelling, invigorate legs, and support them so that they feel fresh and ready to take on whatever you need to do for your day.  You can find compression socks online in a variety of sizes, styles, and color options.