Medical care providers recommend the use of high compression socks and hosiery to help with a variety of health conditions, ranging from simple fatigue and post-surgical care to blood-flow issues, such as deep vein thrombosis and chronic venous insufficiency issues. However, because they are designed and constructed to tightly compress the leg, they can be somewhat uncomfortable to put on and wear. If your doctor has recommended that you utilize knee-high compression socks or some other form of specialized hosiery, the following tips can help you enjoy a more comfortable experience.
Start by ensuring a correct fit
Unlike regular stockings and socks which are sized to accommodate a wide range of body types and sizes, high compression socks and hosiery are fitted to a much higher degree so that maximum compression value is possible. Because of this, it can be more difficult to ensure that they are fitted correctly when making the initial selection.
To ensure the best possible fit, patients should:
- shop early in the day, when legs and feet are apt to be less swollen
- ensure that only properly trained staff members take the measurements to select size
- consider using pressure bandages to wrap the legs and feet and help control swelling while waiting for the fitting appointment
Knee-high compression socks and hosiery that are too tight can increase the risk of skin irritation and infections, while those that are too loose will not be able to offer enough beneficial suppression.
Don them correctly
In addition to a great fit, it is important that patients put high compression socks and hosiery on correctly each time they wear them. Doctors typically instruct their patients to put this medically-beneficial hosiery on immediately upon arising, before swelling in the lower extremities can occur or worsen.
In order to make putting them on as easy as possible, patients should make sure that the skin of their feet and legs are completely dry. Patients can then roll up each stocking before donning it, unrolling it slowly until it has fully encased the leg. If arthritis or other issues impede dexterity and strength, patients may want to use a device called a stocking donner to help them put their compression hosiery on more easily.
To learn more about wearing compression hosiery and how they can benefit your medical situation, contact your medical care professional or a local home health care supplier who specializes in knee-high compression socks and hose.