9 Top Benefits of Compression Clothing

Calf sleeves in an uphill run

Compression clothing is a type of clothing that fits tightly around the skin. Some items can be purchased in stores, while those with higher compression characteristics require a doctor’s prescription. The garments provide several benefits including the reduction of inflammation, the prevention of vein and blood-related conditions, and increased energy levels.

This type of clothing can be worn anywhere on the body. They can come in the form of an abdominal binder, compression socks and stockings, compression gloves, and even sportswear. They also come in various pressure levels that are measured in mmHg. Lower mmHg numbers signify mild compression, while higher numbers provide more support.

Read on to find out the advantages of wearing compression clothing so you can determine if these items make a smart addition to your wardrobe.

1. Decreases the Risk of Injury

The extra support compression clothing provides can reduce the risk of muscle strains during exercise. It also works as a low-level massage to reduce muscle soreness post-workout.

2. Speeds Up Recovery

Compression clothing will speed up recovery if an injury occurs. It raises the temperature of the skin to increase blood flow and promote healing working in a similar fashion to heat therapy.

3. Reduces and Prevents Varicose Veins

Compression socks for varicose veins illustration

Compression socks and tights are often recommended to people with varicose veins. They squeeze the lower legs, in turn encouraging blood to return to the heart. In doing so, they reduce the aches and pains associated with varicose veins and may even minimize their appearance.

Wearing compression socks and tights may be beneficial to pregnant women who are likely to develop varicose veins during pregnancy. The items can also reduce swelling in the legs and feet, another common pregnancy symptom.

4. Treats Leg Ulcers

Compression therapy is often used in the treatment of leg ulcers. Wearing compression garments can reduce venous hypertension, inflammation, and venous stasis while enhancing tissue vascularization. However, the therapy must be backed with preventative measures to reduce the risk of reoccurrence.

5. Treating Lymphoedema After Surgery

Lymphoedema often occurs after cancer treatment surgery. If a lymph node is removed during the surgery, it may cause fluid to drain from the limbs which leads to pain, swelling, and discomfort. Compression garments return fluid to the heart which reduces pain, inflammation, and other complications.

6. Prevents and Treats Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)

DVT occurs when a blood clot forms in the deep veins of the body, usually in the legs. It can cause pain and swelling but in some instances, it may have no symptoms at all. If left untreated, the clot can block blood flow through the vein.

People that have DVT or are at high risk of developing DVT should wear compression stockings any time they are planning to be immobile for long periods of time. Your doctor may also recommend that you wear the stockings at night or every day on a temporary basis.

7. Relieves Feelings of Pain and Fatigue

All of us have experienced feelings of pain and fatigue in our feet and legs after standing for long hours during the day. This is typically due to the blood in your body pooling to the leg area. Compression stockings gently squeeze the leg area to keep the blood circulating, thus making you feel more energized and reducing feelings of pain.

8. Flexible During Exercise

Compression socks in a marathon

The flexibility of compression clothing makes it ideal for exercise wear. It moves with you as you stretch, lift, and extend. It also supports your muscles and joints to ensure you exercise safely.

The items will also fit tightly to your skin so they don’t ride up and won’t produce friction as looser garments can.

9. Keeps You Dry

You may be reluctant to wear compression clothing as you may think the tight material will make you sweat and may lock moisture in. But the items are usually made of polyester, nylon, and similar materials that lift water away from the skin so it can be evaporated. This makes them the perfect things to wear for working out and other types of physical activity.

How to Wear Compression Clothing

Compression hosiery

Compression clothing should be smoothed out so that it lies against the skin without bunching. It also should not be too long as this will cause the items to fold or roll up around the tops or bottoms which can lead to blood flow issues.

Your doctor will be the one to tell you when to wear compression clothing. He or she may recommend you wear the garments at certain times of the day or ongoing for a certain period of time, depending on your specific needs.

It is important to note that the garments must be taken off when you shower or bathe. They can be worn under other apparel such as shoes, socks, and other clothing items.

Compression clothing offers various health benefits. Now that you know what they are good for, you can determine if they are right for you. Will you be adding them to your workout and wellness routines? 

Compression Clothing for Mature Women

Neleus Women's 3 Pack Athletic Compression Long Sleeve T Shirt Dry Fit
Neleus Women’s 3 Pack Athletic Compression Long Sleeve T Shirt Dry Fit, $33.86+
Under Armour Women's ColdGear Compression Leggings
Under Armour Women’s ColdGear Compression Leggings, $27.97+
Calf Compression Sleeves
Calf Compression Sleeves, $10.99+
Hi Clasmix Graduated Medical Compression Socks (5 pairs), $9.98+

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