Compression gloves act as an effective form of therapy, which helps alleviate unpleasant symptoms, such as hand discomfort. They serve the purpose of helping those to help reduce pain and restore normal daily function.

This article will cover some of the most common reasons for using compression gloves and what exactly a compression glove does for arthritis.

Lastly, we’ll take a look at expert suggestions for how long you should actually wear a compression glove.

Why Use a Compression Glove

There are a variety of reasons that someone could need compression gloves. The underlying reason behind most of the specifics is a certain level of discomfort that can be temporarily alleviated by applying pressure over the joints associated with the hands.

From aging and weight gain to physical injuries and chronic overuse, there are many reasons why someone might have discomfort in the joints and hands.

Tension is something that can affect anyone from almost any walk of life. It can build up all over the body and manifest in joints, ligaments, and muscles. It has a tendency to target areas of high use and pressure such as our joints and this can happen to anyone at any age.

Athletes in the prime of their youth experience tension in the same areas that retired farmers experience from years of work. However, of all the reasons the most prevalent condition for using compression gloves is due to arthritis.

Let’s take a few moments to look at what exactly arthritis is and how this might shed light on how long you should wear compression gloves when treating your symptoms.

Arthritis Is a Common Condition for Requiring Compression Gloves

Arthritis is possibly one of the more prevalent and common reasons for dealing with joint pain throughout the body. Most times, this pain is localized to the hands and can manifest in a variety of ways.

Arthritis itself is a term that refers to joint pain and there are several different kinds of arthritis. These kinds of arthritis can be categorized into four general types of arthritis:  

  • Degenerative
  • Inflammatory
  • Metabolic
  • Infectious

The type of arthritis you may be experiencing ultimately comes down to what kind of specific joint problem you are having that is causing the pain or discomfort.

Because arthritis is joint related the different types of arthritis are indicative of how they uniquely affect the joints themselves. Let’s take a look at two of the most common forms of arthritis and what category of arthritis they belong to.

Osteoarthritis, Bone on Bone Pain

Osteoarthritis is one of the most common types of arthritis affecting the largest population.

This form of arthritis falls under the degenerative type. It is normal to develop over time as key elements of the joint composition begin to deteriorate with age or heavy use.

Multiple conditions can cause this kind of arthritis, including weight issues or activity over a long period of time.  

Common places of pain would be knees and hand joints and typically have an onset later in life.

Rheumatoid Arthritis, an Autoimmune Disease

Rheumatoid Arthritis is another common form of arthritis that belongs to the inflammatory type. Your body naturally has an immune system that positively utilizes swelling and redness to help protect and disinfect itself from foreign pathogens. While redness and swelling can be uncomfortable, it is part of your body’s normal response to threats.

However, redness and swelling can also be caused when your immune system is not acting correctly.

Most forms of arthritis do involve some kind of autoimmune state, such as rheumatoid arthritis, which targets joints and causes noticeable swelling and pain. This typically is most notable in the joints of the hand, including the fingers.

This kind of arthritis is one of the more common arthritic conditions that people will utilize compression gloves for. The swelling localizes around joints and can cause a high level of discomfort that can render people’s mobility to be greatly impaired.

Compression gloves act as an effective method to help ease the discomfort caused by rheumatoid arthritis and aid in restoring the mobility of the hands, at least in part if not entirely.

Arthritis can have multiple reasons for onset, and there are many different kinds of arthritis that people can develop.

For instance, metabolic arthritis can come about and manifest as joint pain because of a build of uric acid, a necessary part of your metabolism but also a substance that can form in excess under unfavorable condition

You can even get joint pain from arthritis that is caused by infectious agents like Hep C or exposure to foodborne contamination like salmonella.

How Compression Gloves Help Swollen Hands

Compression gloves work by aiding individuals experiencing discomfort or pain in their hands due to issues like swelling and stiffness. They provide warmth and support to these affected areas that aids in relieving pain.

Compression therapy can also be used during the healing process after a traumatic incident that affected the hands or wrist. They have been known to help maintain movement in affected persons while at the same time helping mitigate pain during the recovery period.

The concept behind why these compression gloves work is simple, they compress and build heat

These two things are essential for the healing process, whether treating an acute situation like an injury or a chronic condition like rheumatoid arthritis. During either event, swelling is caused by the localization of blood to the affected area

While this is a good thing, it sometimes isn’t just blood that swells near the affected tissue. Regardless, however, swelling can lead to severe issues when the blood flow isn’t continuously moving.

Compression gloves help keep your blood circulating throughout the ‘problem areas,’ which helps in many ways.

On top of that, the heat allows the tissue to relax and the blood vessels to dilate, which helps increase blood flow. With increased blood flow, you have new nutrients coming into the affected area that can help in the healing process. This also means that since the blood flow is bringing in nutrients, it is also taking waste products out, which is very important.

Not All Compression Gloves Are the Same

When in the market for compression gloves, whether seeking help with a chronic issue like arthritis or recovery from an injury, the best question to ask yourself is what you want to do while you wear them? While it’s true that you can wear compression gloves to sleep, the truth is that they typically aren’t designed for 24-hour wear.

Most people do experience the symptoms of their conditions during activity, as that’s when their hands and wrists are actively fighting against the swelling that is present and antagonizing the discomfort. In this case, it’s essential to know what kinds of activity you will be doing and use the right gloves that can reflect those values.

For instance, if you will be using your hands quite a bit, say for typing or even outdoors in a garden — it may be well worth your while to get gloves with exposed fingertips as this allows your movements to maintain their agility. 

The team at Hempvana has worked hard to create a compression glove for arthritis that can accommodate a busy hands-on lifestyle. The gloves have exposed fingertips and are made with a blend of hemp fabric that makes them incredibly light and highly durable.

The hemp also acts as a wicking agent to keep your hands dry. Best of all, they not only extend for wrist support but are also machine washable and can be worn many times over. 

How Long Can I Wear My Compression Gloves?

This is a great question when looking into purchasing a set of compression gloves to help you decrease the level of discomfort your hands and wrists may be giving you.

As always, the ultimate answer is to seek professional medical advice because even though the gloves you buy may be dependable, reliable, and uniform, every human is uniquely different.

Most gloves are made to be worn around eight hours as suggested by their manufacturer. The real decision comes down to your own level of comfort. They are a valid source of discomfort management. However, any risk associated with wearing them for too long can be avoided by simply taking them off once you feel like you can.