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You are here: Home > Pain & Injury Center > Sports & General Info > Who Should Use Compression Braces/Sleeves/Socks

Who Should Use Compression Braces/Sleeves/Socks

Compression socks, sleeves, and braces provide gentle but firm support for muscles and joints, and relief for many conditions.

Compression socks are available in varying degrees of pressure, varying lengths (from knee-high, to the top of the thigh), and various colors. Often they provide firmer compression at the foot and ankle that graduates to lighter pressure higher on the leg. This helps prevent swelling by encouraging blood flow out of the lower extremities.

Compression sleeves support muscles and ligaments, reduce or prevent mild, localized swelling, and encourage natural blood flow. They are available for the calves, knees, or thighs. Knee sleeves are available with or without a patellar hole. The sleeves with the hole over the kneecap are designed to keep the patella in correct alignment when the knee is bending. This is useful for people whose kneecaps don't track properly. These sleeves are also beneficial post surgery, and for sufferers from chondromalacia.

Post-operative patients often benefit from wearing compression socks or sleeves for a time, to combat swelling and reduce the risk of deep vein thrombosis. Other conditions such as varicose veins, venous insufficiency causing chronic ankle and leg swelling, shin splints or phlebitis can be relieved by their use.

People who have to stand for long periods of time will suffer from less leg fatigue and swelling of the ankles if they wear compression socks throughout their periods of standing.

People suffering from joint and muscle pain, sprains and strains of the ankle or knee, bruised knee, runner's knee, Achilles tendonitis or mild arthritis will also appreciate the comfort and support provided by compression socks or sleeves.

Athletes find that the increased blood flow from wearing compression socks results in more energy, greater endurance, reduced injury, and faster recovery. However, in order to avoid the danger of deep vein thrombosis, the socks should not extend above the knee. Athletes often wear compression sleeves on their knees or quads for the same reasons, as well as to provide support for weak or recovering muscles, ligaments, and joints.

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Compression Socks, Sleeves, and Braces