Compression socks have many benefits: from boosting circulation to helping with injuries or even serving as protection. Over the months, we have written a lot about the different uses of compression, but today we want to focus on a specific topic – leg cramps.
Leg cramps are uncomfortable and can be extremely painful. They can result from many situations, and when they come, it's tough to get rid of them. So, we will explore how compression socks come in handy when dealing with leg cramps.
But first, let’s see what some of the most common causes of leg cramps are.
Leg cramps while running
Leg cramps can occur during strenuous and prolonged use of your muscles, such as running or swimming. There are many reasons that this happens, and some of them are:
- Not enough preparation before the run
- Excess sweating and loss of electrolytes
- Pushing your muscles too hard
If this happens to you often, you should pay attention to some of the possible reasons and see if there is something you can change. If the problem is that you never warm up enough or don't seem to have the endurance as you would like, compression socks can help you a lot. But we'll get to that. Let's see another possible reason for leg cramps.
Leg cramps when flying
Leg cramps also commonly happen in people who fly long distances. Leg cramps due to flying can happen right after the long flight is over, but they may not be what you think they are. This calf pain you mistake for muscle cramp could be due to vein clots or circulatory problems.
In this case, compression socks are your best friends. Our suggestion is to never fly without compression socks because long sitting hours combined with temperature and pressure changes can bring you long-term problems. If you're a frequent flyer, flight socks, 10-20mmHg, are essential! They also help prevent spider veins, clots, and other vein problems.
Diabetic nighttime leg cramps
People with diabetes can get nighttime leg cramps due to nerve damage resulting from long-term high blood sugar levels. Diet, warm baths, frequent walks, and other self-help tips such as compression socks can ease diabetic leg cramps.
Nighttime cramps can also be associated with inactivity during the day or simply tired muscles. If you don't have diabetes but often find yourself waking up to the shooting pain of a leg cramp during the night, you may reconsider your daily routines.
Compression socks can help in that case, but the frequent occurrence may also be a sign of other conditions that you should consider.
Pregnancy leg cramps
Leg cramps during pregnancy are also very common. Pregnancy comes with many side effects, and leg cramps are just one that pregnant women experience while carrying a child.
Why does this happen? Even if there is not only one true answer to that question, the reasons are pretty obvious.
First, you suddenly carry a constantly growing weight that you and your body struggle more to support these extra pounds, which uses a lot of your energy—leaving your muscles tired and your endurance lower than usual. And that is normal, but it can, and it usually does, lead to muscle cramps, swollen legs, achy feet, etc.
The second reason is also a change in your blood flow induced by hormonal changes. This circulatory issue can also develop into spider veins and even more severe problems if you are not looking after yourself.
In both cases, compression socks work. Doctors frequently recommend compression socks to pregnant women for multiple reasons.
But, all in all, do compression socks prevent leg cramps? Let's find the answers.
Do compression socks help with leg cramps?
Compression socks can be a great ally in dealing with leg cramps.
For instance, athletes often choose compression socks as a part of their essential training gear to boost performance, but also to prevent possible injuries or problems
It’s quite often for athletes to experience leg cramps especially if they are preparing for a competition and pushing themselves more than usual.
Compression material will sit firmly around the leg and move with it, boosting the circulation and micro-massaging the muscle. Compression is great for post-exercise muscle recovery and has a positive impact on muscle health. Of course, you should not skip the warmup, but you should also definitely choose compression socks to be 100% sure to avoid leg cramps.
Can compression socks help with leg cramps? Yes, they absolutely help you prevent them.
Best compression socks for leg cramps
Since there are many different situations in which you can get leg cramps, you need to consider the cause to determine the best compression level to meet your needs.
The best compression socks for leg cramps due to running or other physical activities are specialized activewear compression stockings, such as the Pro Advanced Healing + Recovery compression sock from Skineez®. These socks have a reinforced toe and heel and are a medium to moderate compression level to provide the proper pressure to improve your blood flow in a demanding situation.
On the other hand, the best compression socks for pregnancy leg cramps are light to mild compression. These socks are the best for every day and low-physical activity lifestyles. You only need a slight but constant squeeze to provide extra support to your muscles, break the swelling or boost your circulation.
Graduated light compression socks are also great for night leg cramps because the compression is not too tight, making it safe for you to sleep in them. We generally don't recommend sleeping in compression socks, but they may help with nighttime leg pain.
Can compression socks cause leg cramps?
Typically, compression socks help with leg cramps and do not cause them. If you are uncomfortable in your compression socks, you should probably switch to another level of compression. Please read our guide to compression levels here or check with your doctor for advice.
All in all, whether you experience leg cramps while running, pregnancy leg cramps, or nighttime leg cramps during sleep, compression socks can help you in most cases. If you are unsure of what to get, don't hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We would love to help!