There are many reasons why someone might need to wear a knee brace. Maybe you have had an injury, or perhaps you have arthritis. Whatever the reason, if your doctor has recommended that you need one, then it is important to choose the right one. And with so many different types of knee braces, each with its own advantages and disadvantages, it can be challenging to know which is the right one for you.
In this guide, we’ll help you understand how the knee brace might help you and how long you may need to use it, and then we’ll provide our top tips for selecting the right type.
How Does A Knee Brace Help?
A knee brace supports the knee joint and surrounding muscles, tendons, and ligaments. By doing this, it can help to:
• Reduce pain
• Protect against further injury
• Stabilize the joint
• Improve healing after an injury. You can check Ortho Bracing for more advice.
Remember that if your knee was broken in a no-fault accident, keep all your receipts so you can claim back your expenses. Your legal team will be able to advise you on the process, but you shouldn’t find yourself out of pocket when the accident and subsequent injury weren’t your fault.
In many situations, an interim payment can be made to cover these types of expenses, even if it’s going to take longer to get to an agreement on the total compensation to be paid.
What Types Of Conditions Are Helped By Wearing A Knee Brace?
Many conditions can be helped by wearing a knee brace. These include:
• Arthritis. This is a condition that causes inflammation in the joints. It can be very painful and make it difficult to move the joint.
• A meniscus tear. This is a common knee injury, particularly among athletes. It occurs when there is a tear in the cartilage that cushions the joint.
• Ligament damage. Four main ligaments support the knee joint. These are the medial collateral ligament (MCL), lateral collateral ligament (LCL), anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), and posterior cruciate ligament (PCL). If any of these becomes damaged, it can lead to pain and instability in the joint.
• Osgood-Schlatter disease. This is a condition that affects adolescents and is characterized by pain and swelling below the knee. It is caused by the overuse of the knee joint during growth spurts.
The Different Types Of Knee Braces
Different types of knee braces can be used depending on the severity of the condition.
You may only need to wear a support sleeve if you have a minor injury. This is a simple tube of neoprene that fits over the knee and provides warmth and compression.
Hinged Knee Brace
If you have a more serious injury, you may need to wear a hinged knee brace. This type of brace has metal hinges on either side that allow you to move your knee while still providing support.
Rigid Knee Brace
In some cases, you may need to wear a rigid knee brace. This is usually only recommended after surgery as it limits the movement of the joint and prevents the knee from bending too far in either direction.
Finally, there are also custom-made braces that are specifically designed for your individual needs. These are usually only recommended if you have had previous injuries or surgeries or if you have a very severe condition.
How Long Do I Need A Knee Brace?
This will depend on the reason why you are wearing the brace. For example, if you have had an acute injury, such as a ligament tear, then you may only need to wear the brace for 6-8 weeks. However, if you have a chronic condition like arthritis, then you may need to wear the brace indefinitely. It is essential to speak with your doctor about this so that you can get the best advice for your individual situation.
How To Fit A Knee Brace
The knee brace should be fitted so that the patella (knee cap) is centered in the knee joint. The brace should fit snugly but not so tight as to cause discomfort. It is important to follow the instructions provided with the brace for proper fitting.
It’s usually recommended that you wear the brace for short periods at first, gradually increasing the amount of time you wear it as tolerated.
When To Wear A Knee Brace
You should wear the knee brace when participating in activities that put stress on the knee joint. This includes activities such as walking, running, and lifting. You may also need to wear the brace when resting if your doctor or physiotherapist has recommended it.
Top Tips For Choosing The Right Type Of Knee Brace
There are many different types of knee braces available on the market, so how do you know which one is right for you? Here are our top tips:
1. Speak to your doctor or physiotherapist about what type of brace they recommend for your condition. They can advise you on the different options based on their experience.
2. Consider what level of support you need. Some braces provide more support than others, so if you have a severe injury, then you may need a brace that offers more stability. However, if your condition is not as severe, then you may not need such a heavy-duty brace.
3. Make sure the brace fits well. A knee brace that is too loose will not provide the support you need, and one that is too tight can be uncomfortable to wear. It is essential to try on different braces until you find one that gives you the right level of support and comfort.
4. Consider your lifestyle. If you are an active person, then you will need a brace that allows you to move freely without compromising on support. However, you may not need such a robust brace if you are less active.
5. Compare prices. Knee braces can range in price from around $20 to $200, so it is important to compare prices before making a purchase. However, the more expensive braces tend to be of better quality and may last longer.