Tired of COVID?

We are headed into the 10th month of this pandemic and I am starting to feel like there is no light at the end of this tunnel. Numbers keep going up, rules keep changing, death tolls keep rising and we continue to feel isolated from many of our friends and family. We missed celebrating Thanksgiving with others.....will we have to miss Christmas too? Wearing a mask has become so normal to me that I have at times caught myself questioning why something looks “off” while watching a movie or show, only to discover that I was confused about the lack of masks; the funny thing is that now newly released episodes are starting to have masks and covid included. It’s easy to get complacent with this pandemic, but we must remember why we are doing all this in the first place.

Yes, the majority of people that catch Covid-19 will be affected mildly (like a cold or flu) or not at all (asymptomatic), but what about the others? I know a few people that think they had Covid based on experiencing a few uncommon symptoms (e.g. taste disturbance), a few people that tested positive and had a moderate fever, chills, and headache, but I also know people that are/were affected badly. Do you know anyone that had/has severe health complications due to Covid-19? I recently had my first experience with knowing someone close to me that was affected badly by Covid. They were in the hospital for over 6 weeks, on a ventilator for oxygen, and put into a coma to maintain stability during the recovery. The sound of that was so scary to me when considering my friends, family, neighbors, extended community, and patients. Luckily they are out of the hospital now and making a slow recovery. Losing someone to Covid would be the worst.

I think we all need to remember this and stay humble during these crazy times. I feel like we will be hearing about the ramifications of Covid-19 for at least another year, but I am certain that at some point it will be over and just a memory.

Compression Socks

Compression socks sound so annoying until you try them. Compression socks are often recommended for people with swelling, edema, varicose veins, or soreness in their legs. This can happen for so many reasons, however, the common issue created is a difficulty for the veins to
circulate blood-flow back up to the heart to be re-circulated, thus causing fluid/blood to remain in the legs. This swelling can cause pain, discomfort, fatigue, lack of energy, and cramps.

Compression socks are an easy solution. Simply put, compression socks compress. They put pressure on the legs and veins and in return, this compresses the vein to help create an internal pressure that assists the veins in getting that blood out the vein and back to the heart for
re-oxygenation and re-circulation. Without this system of re-circulating blood through the heart and around the body, the legs get swollen. Long term this can create complications to one's health, and just imagine, the solution was simply a different pair of socks.

There are different levels of compressions socks. Mild (8-15mmHg) is great for travel, mild swelling, or those that have difficulty getting a pair of higher-grade compression socks on, and usually inexpensive; this can be cheating yourself if the doctor has specifically
recommended a stronger grade of pressure for various reasons, however, I still believe something is better than nothing. Moderate (15-20mmHg) is obviously a little bit stronger than mild, and so it can be a little pricier, more effective, and slightly tougher to get on.
Medical grade (20-30mmHg) usually requires a prescription and recommendation from a doctor as these provide a higher level of pressure, usually indicated as a treatment; sometimes athletes or those with no underlying medical conditions can purchase without a
prescription. The price greatly varies between brands, fabric, and length (below knee vs above knee vs thigh-high vs pantyhose). Severe (30-40mmHG) is the big leagues; this definitely needs a prescription and medical advice as likely for a more severe situation or swelling
that requires medical attention.

Often compression socks require measurement. Mild socks are convenient because they usually don't need measurement and fitted by shoe size. Most other levels of compression require measurement because as the level of pressure increases, so does the difficulty to put these socks
on and thus requires the fitting to be more specific to your needs; we measure all necessary aspects, from ankle to largest part of the calf, and then the thigh if needed. Lastly, if the measurement is needed, it is often best to get measured first thing in the morning before the
leg begins to swell from the day's efforts.

I know when I am disciplined enough to wear my compressions socks, I feel a huge difference in relief and energy as a person that stands for a living as a pharmacist, but also as someone who has broken both his legs (Left ankle was a slip and fall, right ankle was soccer, eight years apart).

Are you ready to try your first pair?