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What is Graduated Compression?

Compression socks are made to support the leg and its circulation. Graduated compression is what makes them effective at doing this. Let’s take a look at what this means.


Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines compression as: the act, process, or result of compressing. Compress means: to press or squeeze together.  As defined by these words, compression socks press on the leg. They don’t do this in an even distribution, though. The way the pressure is distributed is what makes them effective.

Pressure and Its Distribution

The leg and ankle area consists of different parts. Obviously, the ankle is lower than the calf area. The point of compression socks is to stop blood from pooling in the veins of the lower leg. According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, compression socks have the most amount of “squeeze” at the ankle area and less squeeze at the top. From bottom to top, they gradually apply less pressure to the leg. You can think of it as a “gradient” of pressure. This gradient keeps blood moving in the veins and helps prevent life-threatening blood clots.

They’re easier to wear than bandages or wraps. Just think how time-consuming it would be to wrap your own legs and create perfectly graduated amounts of compression, with both legs wrapped the exact same way! It would take a lot of time and effort, and it would be especially annoying first thing in the morning, which is when circulation socks are typically put on your legs. These special pressure socks are just another reason to be thankful for modern medicine, and many are asking themselves “Where can I buy compression socks?”

Technology Meets Style

These type of socks can be institutional-looking. The thought of them doesn’t necessarily get anyone excited. The reality and current shopping experience, however, shows that they’re so much more than in the past. Now you can choose from prints, stripes, and a bunch of colors. They look like socks, not something that prompts people to ask “What happened to your legs?” Even though they’re functional, they go with your fashion. Shoes like loafers and mules show quite a bit of sock area, and a more medicinal-looking sock would detract from their appearance. You might even, under those circumstances, avoid letting your legs, ankles, and feet show at all. That’s not the case anymore, because these are the best compression socks for getting circulation benefits while wearing what appears to be an everyday sock.

There are so many styles and colors available, you could go a long time without wearing the same pattern twice. Let’s face it - wearing something that looks like a medical device can be a hassle. You might feel self-conscious or limited in what you can do with your wardrobe. You might feel like it detracts from your outfit. Modern men's circulation socks and ladies circulation socks let you avoid that dilemma entirely.

They also help prevent spider veins and varicose veins, keeping your legs attractive. You avoid health complications that can be caused by long periods of no activity, or a great deal of activity. They’re good for you, as well as functional.

Compression in your life

These socks keep legs from swelling, which is good for travel. Speaking of compression, travel often involves cramming a bunch of activities into a small amount of time. Flight socks keep your legs healthy on the way to your destination, and also during your time there. Comfortable compression socks don’t take up much space in your luggage. Because they keep legs pain-free and help fight fatigue, they help you get the most out of your vacation time.

Under pressure at work? People who work on their feet get a lot out of wearing them. They feel better during and after their workday. Lots of standing and walking can be tiring and painful. Though it’s good to be on your feet and active, there is a certain kind of wear and tear from doing it for long periods with limited rest. Take the pressure off your mind and put it where it counts - on your legs where it supports good vein health.

For the less mobile

Limited mobility puts you at risk for circulation problems, but these pressure socks lower the risk. The specifically-designed graduated compression puts pressure where it’s needed most and keeps blood moving in those who aren’t able to stand or walk a lot. You should also do exercises like flexing your ankles and rotating your feet.

Wear as directed

ClotCare is committed to preventing deep vein thrombosis, so they have guidelines for correct wear. Wash the socks as directed. They typically last between three and six months. The fit of compression socks is important. Make sure they’re not wrinkled; if feet are damp, use cornstarch or talc to keep them dry under the socks. Put them on at the start of your day. If you are unable to wear them for very long, work up to longer amounts of time. Don’t cut them or fold them - if the fit is wrong, replace them with a pair of circulation socks that fit.

If you wear them as recommended, you’ll get the most benefit and they’ll last longer. They’ve been designed to give healthy results, with vein-healthy technology that keeps you comfortable. They were invented by an engineer who needed them for venous leg health; out of necessity comes innovation.

The science behind the design of circulation socks makes sense in terms of efficiency. Wear them for work, travel, or bed-rest and enjoy the variety of compression socks available. With many options to pick from, your work and play don’t need to look like medical devices. The only one who needs to know they deliver health benefits is you.

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Person wearing Black & White ankle compression socks