Understanding Hinged Knee Braces
A hinged knee brace can be an essential tool for protecting your knee from injury, providing support during physical activity, and helping with post-injury recovery. However, putting on and adjusting a hinged knee brace can be challenging for some people, especially if they are new to using these devices. In this guide, we will provide step-by-step instructions on how to put on a hinged knee brace properly.
Step 1: Select the Right Size
The first step in putting on a hinged knee brace is to ensure that you have the right size for your leg. A brace that is too small will not provide enough support, while one that is too large may slip or roll down your leg during activity. Take accurate measurements to ensure the brace fits snugly around your knee and upper calf but is not too tight. Most knee braces come in different sizes, so be sure to check the size chart before purchasing.
Step 2: Prepare the Brace
Once you have selected the correct size, make sure the brace is positioned correctly. The hinge should be on the sides of the knee joint, and the patella buttress should be centered over your kneecap. Adjust the straps and fasteners to the right size and position, so the brace fits snugly around your knee while still allowing for comfortable movement.
Step 3: Slip on the Brace
To put on a hinged knee brace, it’s best to sit down or lie down with your leg extended. Slip the brace over your foot and slide it up your leg until it rests just below your kneecap. Position the hinges on the sides of your knee joint, and make sure the brace is centered correctly.
Step 4: Secure the Straps and Fasteners
Once the brace is positioned correctly, secure the straps and fasteners to keep it in place. Make sure the straps are snug but not too tight, and that the fasteners are lined up properly. Double-check the position of the patella buttress to ensure that it is aligned correctly over your kneecap, and adjust as needed.
Step 5: Check for Comfort and Fit
After securing the brace, check for comfort and fit. The brace should feel snug around your knee without feeling too tight, while still allowing for comfortable movement. You should be able to walk, stand, sit, and perform other activities without experiencing discomfort or pinching in the knee area.
Step 6: Adjust as Needed
Choosing the right size and position for your hinged knee brace can take some trial and error. If the brace feels too tight or loose, or if it slips or slides down your leg during activity, adjust the straps and fasteners until it fits comfortably and securely. If needed, seek help from a healthcare professional to ensure that you are wearing the brace correctly.
Benefits of Hinged Knee Braces
Hinged knee braces offer several benefits for people with knee injuries or those who want to prevent injuries while engaging in physical activities such as sports, dancing or lifting weights. Some of the key benefits of hinged knee braces include:
- Stability and Support: Hinged braces provide extra support to the knee joint, especially during activities that require twisting, jumping, or sudden movements. The hinges in the brace help prevent lateral or inward movements that can cause injuries to the knee joint.
- Pain Relief: Hinged knee braces can help relieve pain and inflammation caused by knee injuries, arthritis, or other conditions. The brace provides compression to the knee joint, reducing swelling and discomfort.
- Improved Recovery: Hinged braces can help speed up recovery after a knee injury by providing compression and support to the knee joint. The brace can also help prevent re-injury by limiting the range of motion during the healing process.
Tips for Wearing a Hinged Knee Brace
If you are new to wearing a hinged knee brace, it’s essential to follow a few tips to ensure that you are using it correctly and getting the most benefit from it. Here are some tips for wearing a hinged knee brace:
- Wear the brace during activities that are most likely to cause knee injuries, such as sports, dancing, or lifting heavy weights.
- Adjust the brace as needed to ensure that it is comfortable and snug around your knee.
- If you experience discomfort or pinching around the knee area, adjust the straps and fasteners or seek help from a healthcare professional.
- Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning and maintaining the brace to ensure that it remains in good condition.
A hinged knee brace can be an effective tool for preventing and recovering from knee injuries, but putting it on correctly can sometimes be a challenge. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can ensure that you are wearing your hinged knee brace correctly and getting the most benefit from it. Remember to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and seek help if you experience any discomfort or difficulty wearing your brace.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What is a hinged knee brace?
- Who can benefit from using a hinged knee brace?
- How do I know what size knee brace to get?
- Can I wear a knee brace all day?
- What should I do if my knee brace causes discomfort or pain?
A hinged knee brace is a medical device designed to provide support, stabilization and protection to the knee joint. It features hinges and straps that help to limit the range of motion of the joint.
Anyone who has suffered a knee injury, has a history of knee problems, or engages in activities that put pressure on the knee joint, such as sports or weightlifting, can benefit from using a hinged knee brace.
It’s essential to measure your leg and consult the manufacturer’s size chart before purchasing a hinged knee brace. A brace that is too small or too large can be uncomfortable or ineffective.
It’s generally safe to wear a knee brace for extended periods, but it’s essential to remove the brace periodically to allow your knee to move and breathe.
If your hinged knee brace causes any discomfort or pain, adjust the straps and fasteners or seek help from a healthcare professional to ensure that you are wearing the brace correctly.
- Bolack, B., & Andrews, J. R. (2017). Knee Bracing. Journal of athletic training, 52(6), 556-561.
- Silverstein, J. A., Moorman III, C. T., & Heikes, C. S. (2020). Common Knee Injuries: Diagnosis, Treatment, and Rehabilitation. Primary Care: Clinics in Office Practice, 47(4), 527-541.
- Sports Medicine Information. (2021). Knee Braces: Do They Work? Https://www.sportmedbc.com/article/knee-braces-do-they-work.