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    Complete Guide to Compression Socks for Flying

    compression socks for flying

    Should you wear compression socks when you fly? Yes!

    Have you ever gotten off a plane to find your ankles swollen and your legs feeling tight and painful? It is no fun. Traveling can be so great but no one wants to start their trip feeling uncomfortable. There is also a risk of developing blood clots on a flight. The risk is low but it does go up as travel time increases.

    Why do my feet swell when flying?
    Believe it or not it doesn’t have anything to do with flying but is a result of immobility.
    Sitting with your feet on the floor for a long period causes blood to pool in your leg veins. The position of your legs when you are seated also increases the pressure in your leg veins. These things combined can cause legs and feet to swell.

    Compression Socks to the rescue!
    Compression socks are a great tool to decrease swelling, increase comfort and make sure you arrive at your destination ready to go.

    Compression socks can help prevent swelling
    As mentioned above, sitting for long periods- like during a flight can cause fluid retention in your legs below the knee. This can easily be prevented with the right compression socks.

    The best way to keep blood moving is to walk around and stretch. But there is not a lot of room to do this on a plane. Compression socks help prevent swelling by promoting improved blood flow in your legs by gently pushing blood flow up the leg. This helps keep the blood moving and the swelling down.

    Compression socks can help fight leg fatigue
    When you stand up after a long flight, your legs can be stiff and take a while to get used to moving. In addition to  promoting circulation, compression socks also help fight the feeling of fatigue in your legs.

    Keeping the blood flowing and the edema down will help keep your muscles limber and your legs ready for action. 

    Compression socks help prevent blood clots
    One of the most well-known perks of compression socks is how they can help to prevent blood clots. This is why they are commonly used after surgery!  Blood clots are a concern for many people when traveling by air. By preventing blood from pooling in the lower legs, compression socks help keep blood clots from forming. 

    Compression socks can help prevent varicose veins
    If you suffer from varicose veins, wearing compression socks can help. Wearing them on a regular basis —  especially if you travel often — will help prevent the decreased circulation that can cause varicose veins to be more painful and prominent. 

    For compression socks to do their job, there are a few things to consider.

    Buy compression socks that go over your calf.
    Compression socks that only go to the ankle aren’t going to do the job. The socks need to be over the calf to provide the circulation and comfort you need.

    Buy compression socks that fit.
    Too small and they will be uncomfortable and could cause more circulation issues than they solve. Too big and the benefits of the compression will be diminished. 

    Buy the right level of compression.
    The level of compression the socks provide is indicated by mmHg. This stands for millimeters of mercury and it is a measure of pressure. It is also used when taking blood pressure. Compression socks come in many different levels of compression but for flying, socks with 8-20 mmHg are going to be your best bet. Many socks will fall in between this range like 8-15 mmHg, 12-14 mmHg or 15-20 mmhg. Compression levels over 20 mmHg are best worn when prescribed by a doctor.

    One more- very important- thing.
    Don’t forget about style! Compression socks don’t have to be boring white or black. There are so many cute styles available. From florals to stripes and polka dots. There are even lightweight compression socks if you are traveling to someplace hot! Find some compression socks you love, and have a great trip :)

    See Ease Living's Selection of Compression Socks HERE.

    ease living owner occupational therapist

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    Does Medicare Cover Compression and Diabetic Socks?

    does medicare cover compression or diabetic socks


    Did your doctor tell you that you should wear compression or diabetic socks? What is this all about?

    Compression socks are often prescribed for varicose veins and leg swelling. They are also great for preventing that tired and achy feeling you experience when you're on your feet all day. Compression hosiery is also recommended after surgery if you must stay in bed for a long time.

    Just like compression socks, diabetic socks are specially designed to provide comfort and protection for the special needs of those with diabetes. Diabetes often leads to circulation problems, especially in the legs. Socks that don’t dig in to the legs and impair circulation are so helpful for preventing foot ulcers and for comfort.

    Since your doctor prescribed these socks and said they are important for your health, they must be covered by Medicare right?

    Nope. Medicare and most medical insurance plans do not cover compression or diabetic socks. Even with a prescription from your doctor they are a non-covered service.

    There is one exception. If graduated compression stockings are specifically prescribed for treatment of open venous stasis ulcers, they might be covered as they may be seen as wound dressings. But there are certain conditions to meet. Medicare will only cover the cost of gradient compression stockings that are worn below the knee and deliver compression greater than 30 mmHg and less than 50 mmHg. The coverage doesn't apply to compression socks prescribed for treatment of circulation issues, varicose veins, or to prevent ulcers.

    Always contact the insurance company to confirm whether or not you have coverage before making your purchase.

    Given this, why not buy compression and diabetic socks you like instead of the ones presented to you at the medical supply store or corner drug store? At Ease Living we sell socks that would be at home on the runway and that would make your doctor smile. Click here to see the collections of compression and diabetic socks you will want to wear.

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    What Does mmHg Mean on Compression Socks?

    what does mmhg stand for on compression socks

    When shopping for compression socks you may have noticed the mmHg on the label. What does this mean? MmHg stands for millimeters of mercury and it indicates the level of pressure or compression. Our socks provide graduated compression so the pressure is listed as a range. The higher number in the range is the amount of pressure at the foot while the lower number is amount at the top of the sock.

    So which range is right for you?


    • 20-30 mmHg: If you often experience swelling in your ankles or feet by the end of the day, this is the range for you. Provides relief for heavy aching, fatigued legs. Reduction of mild to moderate edema from pregnancy, varicose veins and other conditions. Size is important with these socks. Some of our patterns are available with 20-30 mmHg.


    • 30-40 mmHg: If you have severe swelling or notice you are still swelling at the end of the day with 20-30 mmHg compression, move to  30-40 mmHg. Provides relief from severe varicose veins and swelling. These can be found at a medical supply store. 
    • 40-50 mmHg: Extra firm compression. Should only be worn under a doctor's supervision. 

    If you are experiencing swelling in your legs it is important to discuss the issue with your physician to understand the underlying cause.

    With so many stylish options available, why wouldn't you try compression for the health and comfort of your legs?  

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    How Do I Know My Compression Socks Are Providing the Right Level of Compression?

    do compression socks work

    Recently I had a customer ask how to know if compression socks are providing the compression stated - 15-20 mmhg vs 20-30 mmHg. I reached out to one some of my favorite socks brands and this is what I learned. 

    A factory with a history of making graduated compression socks and with state of the art technology that provides for circular knitting with different types of yarn.

    When a new shipment is received, the socks under go an extensive quality control process that ensures consistency. Each pair of socks is tested by hand for  sizing and compression level. They are measured and stretched to ensure the correct measurements for the size. Using a Pico Press, the compression level is measured to ensure that the correct mmHg (millimeters per mercury) is being detected in the right area of each sock. With this rigorous testing in place, the socks are listed with the Food and Drug Administration. 

    I only sell compression socks from companies that have this level of testing. The socks are made with functional fabrics to provide graduated compression for the health of your legs. Shop the collection of cute high quality compression socks here. 

    The Beginner’s Guide to Compression Socks

    the beginners guide to compression socks


    For many, compression socks are simply irreplaceable. They have an incredible ability to promote good circulation and ward off some serious side effects of poor blood flow, and that makes them a more than just socks.

    Of course, if you’ve never tried them before, you might be curious about how they work. Here are some answers to common questions about compression socks.

    What Are Compression Socks?

    Compression socks or compression stockings are often worn to help alleviate poor circulation and the problems it causes. Poor circulation can lead to serious problems like swelling in your legs, numbness, pain, muscle cramps and even blood.  So, if you do suffer from it, your physician is very likely to suggest compression devices to help alleviate the symptoms.

    These socks apply pressure to your legs, supporting circulation by mimicking the ability of your muscles to pump the blood backup from the major extremities (the legs and feet), helping push blood back up towards your heart where it can be re-oxygenated and continue circulating.

    Typically, compression socks are tighter around your toes and get looser as they come up your leg.

    How to Choose The Right Pair

    You don’t want to simply pull any pair off the rack and put them on. Compression socks come in more sizes than standard socks and in different levels of compression, or mmHg. Click here for a guide to choosing the right mmHg for your needs.

    Compression Sock Benefits

    There are even more reasons to wear compression socks other than the  health benefits for those with poor circulation. They are also recommended for leg and foot swelling and pain. People often choose to wear compression socks for comfort when they have to stand for long periods of time. They are also great for travel as they can help prevent blood clots when sitting on long journeys.

    There’s a reason why most athletic shops sell and promote compression socks. Their ability to improve blood circulation, speed up recovery time, and prevent soreness make them a valuable companion for gym-goers and non-athletes too.  

    Find The Right Socks

    In addition to making sure your compression socks have the right level of compression and are the right size, find some you like! You are no longer confined to coring black, white or beige socks. There are so many cute compression socks for women and for men. You won’t wear socks you don’t like and they won’t do you any good sitting in a drawer. Find the best compression socks for you and your legs will Thank you.

    Shop our collection of compression socks for men and for women here.

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