Good condition of the knee joint is important for normal movement. If there are any problems, diseases or injuries of the joint, the musculoskeletal system, each step is accompanied by severe and sometimes even excruciating pain in the knee. For the treatment of the knee joint, medications and the use of physiotherapy are prescribed. Care must be taken to protect it from external influences. For this, a knee brace was invented to fix the knee joint. Such devices are made of various materials, have different degrees of protection and have a wide range of applications.
Indications for the use of a knee brace
Such fixation devices are used not only to protect the affected joint, but also to reduce the load on it, as well as to normalize its function after injury and surgery. Knee braces can be used both for therapy (for example, with arthrosis) and for the prevention of various diseases. However, you can use the device only after the appointment of the attending physician, otherwise it will lead to a violation of the blood supply to the joint and aggravate the problem.
The use of a knee brace is indicated both for the treatment and for the prevention of various pathologies. They are often recommended for athletes to wear to prevent injury. The fixation device is prescribed for therapy:
- osteoarthritis and arthritis;
- dislocations and subluxations;
- pathologies of a rheumatic nature;
- injuries and consequent joint instability.
Often the use of a fixator is prescribed in the rehabilitation period after surgery or complex injuries.
The use of an orthosis is recommended for the purpose of:
- unloading of the damaged knee joint. The device is recommended for people suffering from joint diseases, when any step is accompanied by unbearable painful sensations, which significantly slow down recovery;
- prevention of pathologies and injuries. The use of knee pads and sports bandages is mandatory for athletes, as well as for people who work in the field of commerce and construction. People who suffer from excess weight need to wear a special elastic knee brace;
- fixation of the injured knee joint. In this case, the use of a compression bandage is prescribed to help prevent further damage to the knee or meniscus, reduce severe pain and swelling. In this case, the fixation device is a kind of additional stabilizer for the joint;
- movement restrictions. For this, the use of a rigid bandage is prescribed, which completely excludes any movement.
Knee pads help:
- Speeding up the healing process.
- Prevent injuries to the meniscus and knee.
- Strengthening of the damaged joint.
- Keep the patient moving.
- Reducing the pain.
- Improve lymph outflow and blood circulation.
- Elimination of puffiness.
- Minimization of inflammatory processes in the joint.
- Load reduction.
- Facilitate knee movement.
In addition, orthopedic fixators are an excellent alternative to impracticable casts.
What materials are braces made of?
A considerable amount of materials is used for the manufacture of orthoses. The most popular are:
- dog skinIt is used for the manufacture of knee pads with a heating effect.
- Cotton. It is used to give strength and elasticity to the clamps.
- Lycra, elastane, polyurethane - synthetic, elastic and highly breathable fabrics.
- Neoprene. Elastic material that contributes to an excellent fixation of the knee joint. These knee pads are easy to care for. In addition, they have a warming effect.
Devices for fixing the knee: varieties
There are a considerable number of models and types of this orthopedic device. They differ in the material from which they are made. The knee brace can be open or closed, flexible or rigid. In addition, knee braces for the knee joint can be equipped with hinges, metal inserts, magnetic plates, silicone rings, and even an infrared heat source.
Depending on the purpose of the product for fastening, they are presented in the following variations.
- Bandage. Elastic corset that helps to fix the knee area, heating and reducing the load.
- Orthosis. It has similarities to a bandage, but is more functional.
- Calibrate. It is used for preventive purposes, helps maintain the knee joint, prevents damage.
- Clamp. Rigid knee brace, which is used in most cases in the rehabilitation period. Assign such kneecaps for arthrosis.
- Tutor. A device in the form of a metal tire with a rigid fixation. Assign it after surgery or injury. For the manufacture of such knee pads, mainly soft materials are used. This device is hypoallergenic.
- Elastic knee pad. Many familiar, convenient, and easy-to-use devices.
- Headband. Elastic adhesive tape. The task of bandaging is to help reduce the load on the muscular and ligamentous apparatus.
About knee brace in detail
The bandage on the knee joint is used to easily fix the knee. The knee brace helps to minimize the load, but at the same time such devices do not hinder movement. For the manufacture of means of fastening, cotton, synthetics and knitwear are used.
An orthosis is somewhat similar to a bandage. The main difference is the presence of additional elements in the first. Such products are functional and help repair the knee joint, depending on the reasons. They can be equipped with ribs and rigid inserts, silicone rings, side hinges. You can fix the knee brace with velcro.
The splint is a special splint, the main purpose of which is moderate or hard fixation. The device is much more convenient and practical than a plaster cast. Also, when a splint is used instead of a cast, the duration of restoration of knee function is significantly reduced.
As for the knee brace, the main objective of said knee brace is the complete immobilization of the knee. The knee brace is equipped with hinges that allow the patient to move without straining the knee, as well as neoprene-coated reinforcements, which help to make the necessary movements without injuring the meniscus. Such devices are used to repair the joint in diseases such as osteoarthritis and gonarthrosis, as well as when the meniscus is torn.
Calipers are designed for people who are actively involved in sports and lead an active lifestyle. The caliper helps prevent the risk of various injuries, protects and fixes not only the joint, but also the lateral muscles and ligaments, the patella and the meniscus.
The elastic bandage was held in high regard before the advent of modern fixation devices. It has been used during sports to prevent injury and minimize pain.
The tape is a unique bandage equipped with a special adhesive surface. With the correct use of the product, it does not pinch the joint and does not constrain movements, but on the contrary, performs a micromassage of the skin. For the manufacture of such clamps, cotton is mainly used. This product helps to minimize pain in the affected joint, swelling and bruising.
Recommendations for choosing a knee brace
An orthosis for the knee joint is selected only by a qualified specialist and depending on the purpose of use. The knee brace must match the individual parameters of the knee. In no case is it worth choosing a device on your own, especially if there are complaints of pain. An incorrectly selected knee brace can be harmful. Ideally, the knee brace fits the knee, fixating the joint, but not tightening it. In the event that the product is large, it will slip, and therefore it will not perform its functions.
You should buy a bandage only in a specialized store. Orthotics prices will vary depending on the manufacturer, model and functionality of the device.
As for the size, you can determine yours as follows: measure your leg a little above the knee (about six inches). If the hip circumference is 44 cm, then your size is S, 44-54 cm - M, 54-60 cm - L, 60-67 cm - XL, 67 and more - XXL.
In order not to be confused with the size, be sure to measure the product before purchasing.
How to care for your knee brace
In order for the orthopedic knee brace to serve you for a long time and not lose its therapeutic and preventive properties, you need to take care of it and follow the rules of operation prescribed in the instructions.
- Do not wash the bandage in the washing machine.
- Do not iron the latch.
- Do not hang product to dry. Lay it on a flat surface. This way you avoid deformation and stretching of the orthosis.
- Do not use additional chemicals at the time of washing.
You can use the bandage only after a doctor's prescription. If you play sports and decide to take care of the condition of the joints during exercise, it is advisable to purchase an orthosis in the presence of a trainer. Don't wear a knee brace for more than three hours a day. Use only at the time of sports or exercise therapy.