If you are at risk of vein disease, compression stockings will likely be able to help you reduce the chances that you will go on to develop bulging vein problems. Or, if you are already suffering from varicose veins or spider veins, compression stockings can help relieve that tired ache and heaviness you may be feeling.
Those at risk of developing vein disease include women over age 50 and those with a family history of vein disease. People who are overweight or obese, sedentary, and who smoke are also at increased risk. Finally, people who must spend long periods of time on their feet are susceptible to vein disease.
How Compression Stockings Work
Being overweight and/or on your feet for long periods put extra stress on your circulatory system, because the blood must travel upwards in the legs against the pull of gravity. Over time, you’ll have increased chances of developing problems with your vein walls and valves. When the walls and valves of the veins weaken, blood can pool in the legs, leading to varicose veins and spider veins. Compression stockings are designed to help contribute to the upwards lift that diseased veins are unable to provide on their own. The stockings are basically elongated tubes of fabric that provide a bit of pressure to the legs on the outside, helping the blood to flow upwards towards the center of the body where it needs to go. Usually, the most pressure is applied around the ankle area, where the pull of gravity is the strongest.
Choosing and Wearing Compression Stockings
Although you can buy compression stockings without a prescription, you may wish to visit a reputable spider vein center or varicose vein center such as Flower Mound Vein Center who can provide you with a professional recommendation as to the best size and type for your particular problems. There are many sizes and types available, and if you wear something that is too tight or too loose, you won’t get the benefits and could even do more harm than good. Getting the advice of an expert spider vein specialist will ensure the stockings will be effective.
Generally, compression stockings should be worn all day long. They may feel constrictive at first, but most people get used to having them on in a short time. If you prefer, you can gradually increase the time you wear them each day, starting from a few hours up to the whole day.
You should purchase new stockings every 3 to 6 m months to ensure they maintain their effectiveness. Also, if you gain or lose weight, you will likely find they don’t fit so well anymore.
Compression stockings can be an effective preventive measure and can help relieve the discomfort of vein disease. However, the stockings cannot eliminate existing varicose veins or spider veins. Fortunately, these days there are many effective, quick, and minimally invasive treatments for vein disease. Dr. Handley and his team would like the chance to meet you and answer any questions you have about the use of compression stockings, or about vein treatment in general. If you are in the Flower Mound, TX area, please give us a call to schedule a consultation.