To get a better understanding of the importance of maternity compression and support hosiery, let us briefly examine the challenges expectant mothers face while their bodies undergo dramatic changes.
All too often, pregnancy is accompanied by less than pleasant side effects such as the occurrence of morning sickness frequently caused by hormonal changes and dietary intolerances. The growing baby also causes the mother’s body to produce a higher volume of blood, which has to circulate through her body putting added strain on her veins and arteries.
The increasing weight from the baby presses on the mother’s pelvic area and puts more stress than normal on the veins and lymphatic system. They have to work even harder and against gravity to pump blood back up the legs to the heart and lungs. The unwanted consequences are many times pain, cramps and swelling (edema) from blood and fluids pooling in the legs, and in worse cases, the dreaded appearance of varicose veins.
The expectant mother’s best defense against these unwelcome conditions is to take action before they can occur. If you are prone to any of the above described health issues during pregnancy, preemptive measures are the best way to protect yourself from unnecessary suffering and pain. Talk to your doctor about maternity hosiery, get recommendations on what is best for your particular situation, and discuss any concerns you are having.
Keep in mind that not all maternity hosiery is created equal. There are many things to consider. What compression strength is best for you? How much compression can you tolerate? Do you prefer warmer or lighter maternity stockings or pantyhose (likely dependent upon the time of the year you are pregnant)? Do you prefer footed or footless hosiery? How important is the appearance of your hosiery? If you are fashion conscious or have to dress for success, you may want fashionable maternity hosiery.
There are seemingly endless choices of maternity hosiery available and it may take trial and error before you find the most comfortable choice while preventing or alleviating your leg ailments.
If you are prone to any of the above described conditions and your doctor recommends and prescribes maternity compression stockings or support pantyhose, chances are that your insurance company may even cover some or all of the cost. The medical community and a growing number of health insurance companies recognize compression stockings more and more as treatment devices for leg conditions that could otherwise escalate into more serious illnesses if left untreated.
See also our post “Varicose Veins During Pregnancy – How Can You Prevent Them?” for additional info.
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