Most popular varicose vein treatment procedures, like sclerotherapy and micro laser treatment, are performed in a vein clinic. However, the management of chronic venous disease and the symptoms brought on by varicose veins, occurs at home when there aren’t any medical professionals hovering over you instructing you step by step what to do. Therefore, it is critical that you learn for yourself how to get the full benefit out of home management tools like wearing compression socks if your doctor has instructed you to do so. Here are several critical tips about compression socks that can be utilizes before and after varicose vein treatment.
Never Wear Your Compression Socks To Bed
This is is pretty hard fast rule, unless your doctor has a good reason to make the rare exception, such as the first night after varicose vein treatment. Otherwise, at night, compression socks are not needed because you are laying horizontal (supine) and the blood in your veins is not accumulating in your legs like it does during the day when you are upright. Furthermore, compression socks can press on the nerves in your feet as you attempt to sleep and cause pain.
Always Hand Wash Your Compression Socks Every Day
Do not put your compression socks in the washer and dryer. The elastic fibers in them will be destroyed by this process and they will not provide the compression they should to achieve their purpose. Furthermore, you should never use laundry detergent on them because this too can easily damage the elastic fibers. Instead, use the same body soap that you use in the shower as it is far more gentle. However, it is better to swish them in the water rather than rub them so as not to wear out the fibers. As you are wearing your compression socks, the elastic fibers will stretch out. Hand washing them and letting them dry in the ambient air will shrink the elastic fibers back to their original size.
Buy New Compression Socks Every Two To Three Months
No matter how well you care for them, the elastic fibers in compression socks will wear out over time. The usual lifespan of compression socks is two to three months, depending on how often you wear them and the type of sock you buy. If you wear your compression socks beyond their natural lifespan, they will not provide adequate compression to be therapeutic. Please note that some people will tell you to replace your compression socks every three to six months. However, for most people, a great deal of compression strength will be lost by the third month. Thus, you have to balance the need for compression with the price you pay for compression socks as they aren’t cheap!
Accurate Sizing Is Essential For Good Therapeutic Compression
When you measure the diameter of your calf and ankle to determine your sock size, you should do so first thing in the morning. This should be before you stand, before you sit, before you drink coffee, and before you eat breakfast. In fact, it would be a good idea to have a tape measure ready and handy so you can take your measurements truly first thing. This will give you the size you need to give good therapeutic compression.
Put Your Compression Socks On First Thing In the Morning
Besides sizing, this is the most important factor in whether or not your compression socks will serve you well. You want to put on your compression socks before your feet and legs have a chance to swell. If you put them on AFTER your feet and legs swell, then you’ve lost the advantage of compression which would have prevented that swelling, at least in part. Remember, compression socks are better at preventing swelling than making swelling go down.
Donning Gloves Will Extend the Life of Your Compression Socks
Donning gloves are usually made from cotton and coated with latex rubber. They are recommended to protect your compression socks from fingernails that may snag the socks and cause them to run, thus decreasing their lifespan. They also give you a better grip when putting on your compression socks, making them easier to put on correctly.
Do Not Wear Lotions or Moisturizers On Your Legs or feet
When wearing your compression socks, it is very important you refrain from putting on lotion or moisturizers. The oils in these products will break down the fibers in your compression socks in a hurry.
Do Not Roll Your Compression Socks
When putting on your compression socks or taking them off, it is important not to roll them. This can create a strand of threads that can cut off your circulation in a particular area. This can actually increase your need for varicose vein treatment.
Get Some Expert Advice
Metro Vein Centers offers a free initial consultation if you are contemplating varicose vein treatment and or need to have a duplex ultrasound scan to determine if you need varicose vein treatment. When you visit Metro Vein Centers, you can ask them about compression socks and get them to show you how best to put them on for proper compression.