Did you know that about 15 million people are living with joint pain today?
And many of those people have knee pain.
Typical treatments for knee pain include invasive surgeries to pain medications loaded with side effects to natural remedies.
Knee braces are a standard natural treatment used by many people suffering from knee pain, but not everyone knows how to wear a knee brace properly or how long they should wear it.
In the article below, we will talk about knee braces and answer the question “is it ok to wear a knee brace all the time?”
- How Should You Use A Knee Brace?
- Types of Knee Braces
- Knee Braces For Pain Relief
- How Do Knee Braces Help Arthritis?
- How Long Should I Wear a Knee Brace?
- Is it Ok To Wear A Knee Brace All The Time?
- Contact Ethos Health Group
How Should You Use A Knee Brace?
If you’re experiencing enough pain that you think you should be wearing a knee brace, you should see a doctor.
Your doctor will advise you on wearing your knee brace, and you should follow their instruction carefully.
When you wear your knee brace will depend on what kind of knee brace it is and what problem it’s treating.
Some knee braces are worn all the time, at least starting out, and some are only worn during sports, exercise, or other physical activity.
Make sure to periodically check the placement of your knee brace during activities to make sure it hasn’t moved.
A poorly placed knee brace often does more harm than good.
Types of Knee Braces
There are several kinds of knee braces, and each one is used for different reasons.
Hinged Knee Brace
A hinged knee brace will stabilize your knee joint and keep the bones from moving around too much.
A hinged brace will keep your four main ligaments in your knee from working as hard and help control your range of motion.
Hinged braces are commonly used for tears in the knee.
Functional Knee Braces
Functional braces give added support to people who have had a knee injury in the past.
Athletes often wear these braces when they return from a significant knee injury.
A functional brace will stabilize the knee and control motion to prevent re-injury.
Rehab braces are used for a certain amount of time after an injury or surgery.
They will keep your knee stable but allow limited movement while your knee heals.
However, many doctors haven’t seen much benefit from these braces, so they no longer recommend them.
An unloader brace will relieve pain in people who have arthritis in their knees.
They do this by shifting the weight or unloading it from the damaged area of your knee to a stronger region.
A prophylactic brace is very popular among athletes because they protect your knees during contact sports like rugby or football.
The research on them hasn’t proven that they work, but studies are ongoing.
These are not technically braces, but a compression sleeve is the most common type of knee support.
Compression braces or knee sleeves provide compression around the knee joint to support your knee and can control pain and swelling.
Knee Braces For Pain Relief
Many people suffering from knee pain, especially severe pain, find comfort in wearing a knee brace.
People with osteoarthritis or chronic pain often turn to knee braces for relief from their pain.
There isn’t much research out there that proves a knee brace is a cure for knee problems, but many people find they help their symptoms and provide peace of mind.
The most common type of brace worn for pain relief is the unloader brace that we talked about above.
Unloader braces are custom-designed and made of molded plastic, foam, and steel struts to limit side movement.
They put three points of pressure on your thigh bone, forcing your knee to bend away from the painful or damaged area.
Check out our previous blog: What is better for your knees, walking or cycling?
How Do Knee Braces Help Arthritis?
The goal of a knee brace for people with arthritis is to provide support for their knee and decrease pain and improve function.
Exactly how this is accomplished isn’t exactly known.
Many theories exist about how knee braces work in patients with arthritis, but none have been proven conclusively.
Knee braces likely provide compression and support to the soft tissues around your knee.
Wearing an effective brace may keep you comfortable exercising, and there is evidence that exercises and strengthening help to treat the symptoms of knee arthritis.
Knee braces have mainly been studied in people with osteoarthritis. Still, people with rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory types may also benefit from wearing a knee brace.
Bracing your knee aims to provide stability and manage the pain and associated swelling while addressing the mechanical issues.
How Long Should I Wear a Knee Brace?
If you’re dealing with an issue that requires a knee brace, you should wear it for at least a week.
If you wear a brace for a week and you’re still experiencing pain, you should see a doctor who can advise you on how long to wear the brace and what type of brace you should be wearing.
The type of knee brace you have will also determine how long you wear it as knee braces have multiple purposes depending on the brace itself.
A knee brace with hinges, for example, protects your ligaments during contact sports.
Other braces will reduce pain by offloading pressure from certain parts of your knee.
Compressing knee sleeves will keep your knee warm and support a weak joint if you have general knee pain.
Engineers have also designed knee braces for specific parts of the knee.
Some braces will align your patella while applying pressure to reduce pain.
If you’ve just had knee surgery, a rehabilitative brace will keep your knee immobile so you can rehab it slowly.
When you wear a rehab brace, you will have limited motion to protect yourself from re-injuring your knee.
The type of pain you are experiencing and the type of brace you wear will determine how long you should wear it.
Is it Ok To Wear A Knee Brace All The Time?
Wearing a knee brace can be very beneficial, but it’s still important to know when and how long to wear it.
You should speak with a knee pain specialist to discuss whether or not wearing a knee brace is right for you.
If the specialist gives you the okay, you can wear your brace all day.
But be sure to follow the directions of your knee pain specialist because the improper use of a knee brace can worsen your pain and cause further damage to your knee.
Knee braces that immobilize your knee can weaken it.
To maintain strength after your injury, you should do knee exercises under the supervision of your specialist.
Contact Ethos Health Group
If you think your knee pain needs more than a knee brace, Ethos Health Group can help.
They have developed a proprietary HyalRegen-CT method as a comprehensive solution for those suffering from knee arthritis and pain.
Lubricating injections are performed under precision imaging guidance, so the right area is targeted.
This advanced medical process adds cushioning fluid back into and around your knee.
Even more exciting, these F.D.A. cleared injections can help your knees stimulate more of their natural fluid, giving you long-term benefits and relief.
If you want to learn more about what the Ethos Health Group can do for your knee pain, click the button below to schedule a free consultation.