The Benefits of Compression Therapy, Part 3 of 3
During this last portion of our three-part series about compression stockings to relieve varicose veins and other symptoms of vein disease, vein physician Marlin W. Schul, MD, RVT, DABVLM, reviews compression options for warm-weather-wear and for athletes.
Board-certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine and Venous and Lymphatic Medicine, Dr. Schul is the lead physician at the Dothan, Alabama, Center for Vein Restoration location.
Any tips for wearing compression during the summer or in warm weather climates?
Dr. Schul recommends that compression wearers first ask themselves, “what am I trying to accomplish by using compression?” If it is solely to reduce venous pressure or related swelling, there are many other ways to achieve this. For example, Dr. Schul explains, getting 10,000 steps daily. Those who achieve this feat “probably won’t have much in the way of symptoms.”
For those who live or work in a hot environment, Dr. Schul recommends a medical grade compression sleeve that doesn’t cover the foot or the ankle. Instead, these sleeves fit from above the ankle to the top of the calf. Some of these sleeves have been shown to keep the skin cooler when wearing a fitted sleeve vs. the opposite limb without compression, says Dr. Schul.
Some varieties of compression sleeves come in unique colors and styles that look like fitness garments, not medical garments. While attention-getting, Dr. Schul says that these garments provide the necessary support without looking like "grandma’s" stockings.
Where do you get compression sleeves or sheer compression stockings?
Fitness sleeves and other athletic compression garments such as compression shorts can be found at big-box, sporting goods, and running stores and come in male and female sizes. Fitness sleeves are easier to fit than the traditional compression stockings because only the calf circumference is needed; thus, “mismatches” between ankle and calf circumference size are not a concern. This is opposed to the more precise measurements needed for knee-high compression stocking that includes the ankle and calf circumference, as well as the height of the crease at the back of the knee to the floor.
Tips for finding the right compression garment for you
Dr. Schul recommends that anyone thinking about adding compression to their regime consider these final pointers:
- Ask yourself, why is compression needed?
- Are you interested in something stylish or something that simply does the job?
- If you have any questions or are unsure of your compression need, it is best to seek the advice of a medical professional
Ask a vein professional if compression stockings are right for you
The vein doctors at Center for Vein Restoration (CVR) are the nation’s leading vein care experts. They can access your vein health and, if compression stockings are recommended, measure you for the perfect fit. You will not get this level of care and attention from the drug or big box store!
Call 1-800-FIX-LEGS or visit centerfrovein.com for more information or to schedule an appointment.