Compression Therapies

Written by Sierra Rein
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There are many different types of compression therapies to choose from, depending on the nature of the injury. The two main types are "3-4 layer" compression bandaging and elastic graduated compression hosiery. On the other hand, cold compression therapies incorporate the application of an iced or frozen chemical pack within the wraps themselves.

Athletes typically use a combination of layered compression and cold compression therapies to rest and numb any strained or injured area. Runners often keep a collection of Ace bandages and ice packs in a cooler to use as soon as they cross the finish line. Professional golf, baseball and tennis players often keep a frozen compression wrap at home or in the clubhouse to put on as soon as play ends and the recovery process begins.

Compression therapy is also extremely effective when dealing with certain diseases and conditions. For example, patients with lymphedema and venous disorders will put elastic graduated compression hosiery onto their tired, achy legs to prevent further swelling and reduce pain. Persons with leg ulcerations and poor blood circulation will also use compression therapy.

Pre-Manufactured Cold Compression Therapy Wraps

Many who do not have the time or skill to professionally cover an injury or pained area with a cold wrap purchase ice packs already sewn into neoprene covers. These can be found already shaped to fit certain injury-prone areas of the body, including knees, ankles, elbows, shoulder joints and wrists. The best wraps are designed with built-in Velcro straps to keep the cold and pressure on the injured area for hours at a time and can be boundlessly washed and reused.


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