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Should People with Edema Wear Compression Socks?

Those suffering from edema know how difficult it can be to find relief for their symptoms. Often, patients will use a variety of methods to search of relief. One of the easiest ways to help improve your quality of life while dealing with edema is to seek the proper socks for your condition.

What is Edema?

Edema is the term used for the unusual buildup of fluids in certain types of tissues within our bodies. There are two types of edema - peripheral which occurs most often within the feet, and pulmonary which occurs in the lungs. Peripheral edema can be caused by a variety of reasons such as pregnancy, medication, or venous insufficiency.


Symptoms of peripheral edema include swelling beneath the skin, skin that is stretched or shiny, or that holds an indentation when pressed for several seconds.


If you experience any of these symptoms, talk to your doctor or medical provider. They will work with you to help determine the cause and create a treatment plan.

Compression Socks for Edema Relief

Compression socks can be a wonderful way to help find relief for your edema symptoms. Using specially designed levels of pressure, compression socks work to promote proper blood flow in your legs as well as  help prevent future fluid build up. A pair of compression socks should fit snugly enough to give your feet the support they need.


Compression socks work by using different levels of pressure to help support your legs, relieve aches and pains, and help decrease venous pressure. The compression aids your blood circulation and help manage your risk for further foot problems. 


People suffering with peripheral edema should talk to their doctor about when to wear compression socks. Depending on the severity of your swelling, you may need to start with a lighter level of pressure and work your way up to more compression. Compression socks are not generally recommended to be worn overnight.

Other Home Remedies for Edema

While compression socks are a wonderful tool for helping to manage the symptoms of your edema, they work best when combined with using every tool available to you to fight your edema. It’s important to take good care of your feet when dealing with edema. Make sure you talk to your doctor before trying any home remedies for yourself to see which ones may be right for you.


  • Lower your salt intake. Because salt makes us retain more fluid, it can worsen your edema. 
  • Kick back and elevate your feet several times per day. Make sure you’re elevating your feet above the level of your heart for best results.
  • Massaging the area affected by edema may help reduce fluid buildup in that area. Use firm, careful movements toward your heart as you massage.
  • Keep your feet clean and otherwise protected. Always wear a clean pair of moisture wicking socks. 

Compression Can Help

Compression socks are a versatile tool to help you manage the swelling in your feet. Because compression socks come in varying levels of pressure, you can adjust as the swelling starts to go down. Your doctor may recommend that you continue wearing compression socks as a preventative measure after treatment. 

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