Different Types of Compression Socks: Understanding the Grades

Different Types of Compression Socks: Understanding the Grades

Written by: Editor



Time to read 6 min

Compression socks have become increasingly popular recently, touted for their potential benefits in various health and athletic applications. But with a vast array of compression socks available, understanding the different grades (measured in mmHg) is crucial for choosing the right pair for your specific needs.

This comprehensive guide delves into the world of compression socks, explaining the meaning of mmHg, exploring the different compression grades and their applications, and offering valuable tips on selecting the perfect pair for your desired benefits.

Decoding mmHg: Understanding Compression Levels

The effectiveness of compression socks is measured in millimeters of mercury (mmHg). This unit indicates the pressure exerted on the legs by the socks. Here's a breakdown of the most common compression grades:

  • Mild Compression (15-20 mmHg): This gentle pressure is suitable for promoting circulation, preventing minor swelling, and managing fatigue in healthy individuals. It's also commonly used for travel or prolonged sitting to reduce the risk of blood clots.

  • Moderate Compression (20-30 mmHg): This moderate pressure level offers more significant benefits for circulation, swelling reduction, and pain relief associated with varicose veins, mild lymphedema, and chronic venous insufficiency (CVI).
  • High Compression (30-40 mmHg): This firm pressure is recommended for individuals with more severe conditions like moderate lymphedema, severe varicose veins, and post-surgical swelling. Due to the increased pressure, it's crucial to consult with a doctor before using high-compression socks.
  • Medical-Grade Compression (40-50 mmHg): This strongest compression level is prescribed by medical professionals for specific medical conditions and requires a doctor's fitting and supervision.

Different Types of Compression Socks: Applications and Benefits

Compression socks come in various styles and lengths to cater to different needs and preferences. Here's an overview of the most common types:

  • Knee-High Compression Socks: The most popular type, offering graduated compression from the ankle to the knee. Ideal for promoting circulation, managing mild to moderate swelling, and preventing varicose veins.

  • Thigh-High Compression Socks: Extend further up the leg, providing more comprehensive compression for lymphedema, severe varicose veins, and post-surgical swelling.

  • Pantyhose Compression Stockings: Full leg and abdominal compression is often used for severe lymphedema or post-surgical procedures.

  • Arm Sleeves: Designed for arm lymphedema, promoting lymph drainage and reducing swelling in the affected arm.

Beyond the compression grade and type, consider these additional features when choosing compression socks:

  • Material: Moisture-wicking materials like nylon and spandex are ideal for comfort and breathability.

  • Open-Toe vs. Closed-Toe: Open-toe options allow for easier foot inspection, while closed-toe styles offer more comprehensive compression.

  • Seamless Construction: Seams can irritate sensitive skin. Opt for seamless styles for optimal comfort.

Selecting the Right Compression Socks for You

Choosing the right compression socks depends on your individual needs and goals. Here are some key considerations:

  • Consult Your Doctor: Especially if you have any underlying health conditions like diabetes, peripheral artery disease (PAD), or circulatory problems.

  • Consider Your Needs: Are you looking to improve circulation, manage swelling, prevent varicose veins, or address a specific medical condition?

  • Comfort and Fit: The socks should fit snugly without being constricting. Measure your calf circumference and ankle circumference to ensure proper sizing.

Compression Socks: Beyond the Hype – Real Benefits and Considerations

While compression socks offer a range of potential benefits, it's important to have realistic expectations:

  • Not a Cure-All: Compression socks are a supportive tool, not a cure for any medical condition.

  • Gradual Improvement: Results may take time and consistency when wearing the socks.

  • Not for Everyone: Compression socks may not be suitable for individuals with certain health conditions. Consult your doctor for guidance.


JOBST is known for its innovative compression solutions that cater to diverse needs, from medical-grade compression garments to stylish and functional everyday wear. The brand's compression socks, stockings, and garments are crafted with advanced technologies and high-quality materials to provide effective support and relief for individuals dealing with circulation issues, venous conditions, and leg discomfort.

One of the key features of JOBST products is their graduated compression design. This design applies varying levels of pressure along the leg, with the highest pressure at the ankle and gradually decreasing pressure as it moves up the leg. This targeted compression helps improve blood circulation, reduce swelling, and alleviate symptoms associated with varicose veins, edema, and venous insufficiency.

Additionally, JOBST offers a range of compression levels, from mild to high, to suit different needs, ensuring that individuals can find the right level of support for their specific condition. The brand's compression garments are also designed with comfort in mind, featuring seamless construction, moisture-wicking properties, and ergonomic designs that enhance wearability and durability.


Sigvaris is another leading brand in compression wear, known for its commitment to quality, innovation, and effectiveness. The brand offers a comprehensive range of compression socks, stockings, and garments designed to promote healthy circulation, prevent vein-related issues, and improve overall leg health.

Sigvaris compression products are crafted with advanced materials and technologies to deliver optimal compression therapy.

The brand's graduated compression design provides targeted pressure to support venous return, reduce swelling, and alleviate discomfort. Sigvaris also offers compression solutions for specific needs, such as travel socks, athletic compression wear, and maternity compression garments.

Furthermore, Sigvaris products are designed with user comfort in mind, featuring soft and breathable fabrics, seamless construction, and ergonomic designs that ensure a comfortable and supportive fit. The brand's commitment to innovation and quality makes Sigvaris a trusted choice for individuals seeking effective compression solutions for various health concerns.

Compression Socks.ca: Your Partner in Finding the Perfect Fit

At Compression Socks.ca, We are passionate about helping individuals discover the potential benefits of compression socks. Inspired by the story of a pharmacist who found relief from uncomfortable stockings and a desire to provide high-quality options, we source various compression socks designed to cater to various needs and preferences.

Finding the Perfect Compression Fit with CompressionSocks.ca

Our knowledgeable team is dedicated to providing exceptional customer service. We understand that choosing the right compression socks can be overwhelming. That's why we offer personalized support to guide you through selection. Here's how CompressionSocks.ca makes finding your perfect fit a breeze:

  • Extensive Selection: We offer a curated collection of compression socks in various styles, lengths, compression grades, and features from reputable brands known for their quality and comfort. Whether you need knee-high socks for travel or thigh-high options for managing lymphedema, we have you covered.

  • Detailed Product Information: Our website provides comprehensive information on each product, including compression level, materials, sizing charts, and customer reviews. This transparency empowers you to make informed decisions based on your specific needs.

  • Expert Guidance: Our friendly customer service team can answer your questions and offer personalized recommendations. Don't hesitate to ask if you need assistance selecting the right compression grade, sock type, or size.

  • Free Shipping and Easy Returns: Enjoy free shipping on all orders and a hassle-free return policy for that extra peace of mind when trying out new compression socks.

Experience the Compression Socks.ca Difference:

Here's why CompressionSocks.ca stands out:

  • Focus on Quality and Comfort: We source our compression socks from brands committed to high-quality materials, construction, and graduated compression technology for optimal results and long-lasting wear.

  • Wide Range of Compression Levels: We offer a variety of compression grades to cater to diverse needs, from mild support for travel to high compression for managing lymphedema.

  • Dedicated Customer Service: Our knowledgeable team guides you through every step, ensuring you find the perfect compression socks for your unique needs.

  • Commitment to Education: Our website is a valuable resource packed with informative articles on various topics related to compression socks, their benefits, and how to choose the right pair.

Empower Your Wellbeing with the Perfect Pair of Compression Socks

Don't let leg discomfort or health concerns hold you back from living your life to the fullest. Explore the vast selection of compression socks at CompressionSocks.ca and discover the difference they can make for your well-being.

Take Charge of Your Health Today!

Browse our collection, learn more about the benefits of compression socks, and don't hesitate to contact our friendly customer service team for personalized guidance. We're confident you'll find the perfect pair of compression socks to support your health and empower you to live an active and comfortable life.

Conclusion: Finding the Perfect Pair of Compression Socks for You

Compression socks can be a valuable addition to your health and wellness routine with the right knowledge and guidance. Understanding the different compression grades, types, and features empowers you to choose the perfect pair for your needs.

JOBST and Sigvaris are two well-established brands in the field of compression wear, offering a wide range of products designed to address various health concerns and improve overall well-being.