Why do nurses wear compression socks?
When I started PODSox it was with a singular focus. The goal was to make a better more fun and comfortable compression sock for my fellow nurses. Ever since I started my carrier in health care I noticed that the people in the know where wearing compression garments. Some nurses wore the complete pantyhose, others the knee high TED hose they most likely stole from the supply closet. As I am a male and not used to wearing hosiery I wasn’t clued into the benefits of wearing medical grade compression socks. That has all changed with the evolution of PODsox, compression socks for nurses and really anyone that has legs. (see our story here )
I began to see the light when I was in my anatomy and physiology class in college. Gaining an understanding of how the human body’s blood vessels work is the essential starting point. Once I gained the basic anatomy understanding it was easy to see the benefits of medical grade compression socks. The blood vessels in the human body are broken down into three separate categories.
How Your Vascular System Works
First come the arteries. The arteries are designed to carry blood away from the heart and lungs. This blood is oxygenated and carries much needed nutrition to organs and tissues throughout our body. The arterial side of our vascular system benefits from blood pressure pumped by the heart. This keeps the blood flowing at a steady rate. Second part of our vascular system is the capillary beds.
The capillary beds are what interface with the tissues and organs of the body. This is where the oxygen rich blood is off gassed and the depleted blood is returned to the system. These capillary beds are the end of the line for the oxygen rich blood and the last stop on the vascular trail where our blood pressure plays a role. This is also where compression socks starts to have an impact on vascular health. Blood pressure is what they check at every doctor’s visit. It is an important measurement of health and one that you cannot feel.
The heart pumps blood through the arteries to the capillary beds, this is what creates the blood pressure. If we had “pressure” on both the arterial and venous side of our vascular system you might not need compression socks. However once the blood is relived from its oxygen and other goodies it returns via the veins. The veins do not have blood pressure and this is where the real benefit of compression socks can be seen. Blood in the veins doesn’t have a pump and therefore relays on muscle tissue and a series of values to keep it moving back toward the core of the body. This is where you see blood clots and varicose veins form and where the benefits of wearing medical grade compression socks can be scene.
Every minute, your heart pumps between four and eight litters of blood through your vascular system. That is a lot of volume and any slowdown in that system can have negative results. This isn’t insider information but having some knowledge of how the system works helps in understanding it. This combined with first hand expertise caring for those patients who suffer heart attacks, strokes or pulmonary embolism is why nurses are so knowledge about the benefits of compression. So we nurses are in the know about the benefits of compression yet I saw my coworkers complain about many features of the compression socks they were wearing.
This is where PODsox started.
To make a better mouse trap, to improve and serve my teammates and fellow nurses. The first complaint I sought to tackle was the fit. Not everyone is shaped the same and making a one sizes fits all anything if nearly impossible. This why PODsox comes in 6 sizes ranging from extra small to double XL. Sizing for compression socks should be done off the calf as this is where the deep vein thrombosis form and where getting the compression right matters. Nurses know this about compression socks as they have to place them on patients after surgery.
Other brands of compression socks will size customers off of foot or shoe size. This is just a bad idea. Since when does someone’s foot size and calf size correlate? I could have huge feet and tiny calves and if I selected my socks based off my enormous foot they would not provide the desired compression!
If you want more details on the sizing check out our Q&A page here: https://podsox.com/q-and-a/ Once we got the sizing down it was a matter of selecting the material to manufacture PODsox out of. Ultimately we settled on a combination of nylon and spandex coffee yarn. This allows PODsox to be eco friendly, soft to the touch and help reduce odor that might occur after a long 12 hours shift. Nurses who work 12 hour shifts are in their clothes for much longer–14 or 16 hours most days. Making socks that can give support all day was a huge goal in making compression socks for nurses.
Lastly and certainly not least was the style. Time and time again I heard my fellow nurses complain about how ugly pain white compression socks are. I get it and I couldn’t agree more. When you wear the same drab mono color uniform every day to work it’s nice to have some self-expression in the few clothing choices available. PODsox come in an ever expanding range of styles and patterns. We have solid white, black and tan for the traditionalist, however PODsox also has fun funky crazy styles to make anyone smile.
PODsox are medical grade compression socks for nurses. I know. I am a nurse and I created PODsox with nurses in mind. However you don’t have to be a nurse, or even work in healthcare to benefit from wearing PODsox. I like to joke and say if you have legs you can benefit from wearing compression socks. I know it sounds dorky but it’s true. The customers I serve wear them in all types of situations, bar tenders, teachers, office workers, travels and yes nurses have all told us how much they love PODsox. Don’t take my word it; for check out our google reviews!