knee brace

Easing Knee Pain: How to Choose the Right Knee Brace

By Gladiator Therapeutics

September 8, 2023

Unfortunately, thousands of American adults suffer from debilitating knee pain every year. Statistically speaking, knee pain is the second-most common type of chronic pain in the United States. When left unaddressed, knee problems can lead to limited mobility, decreased quality of life, and permanent damage. You need proactive management and a good healing regimen to prevent these issues and stay pain-free. A great way to do this is by investing in a knee brace, or knee recovery device of some kind. In general, braces are appropriate if you’re having knee pain or wish to control injuries in high-contact sports. You could also wear them for rehabilitative reasons, for example, after an ACL injury.

Steps to Choose the Right Knee Recovery Device

Because choosing the right knee brace for your individualized needs can be daunting, we’ve compiled this guide to help you decide which type suits your needs best.

But first, let’s talk about knee pain and what causes it.

#1. Understanding Knee Pain and Its Causes

Knee pain is usually related to aging, injury, or repeated stress on the knee. If you have an old injury that wasn’t properly treated, it can also flare up now and then or hurt all the time.

A few other causes of knee pain include:

  • Bursitis: A bursa is a sac containing a small amount of fluid above your joints. It helps prevent friction when the joint moves. Overuse, falls, or repeated bending and kneeling can irritate the bursa on top of your kneecap, leading to pain and swelling.
  • Osteoarthritis: Commonly known as the “wear and tear” type of arthritis, this condition causes the knee joint to swell when you’re active. It’s a top cause of knee pain after age 50.
  • Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome: This condition is usually caused by muscle imbalance, tightness, and alignment problems of the legs.

While knee braces can offer support and relief, you should speak to your doctor first. A healthcare professional will diagnose your knee pain and offer proper guidance. A knee recovery device should complement, not replace, professional medical care.

#2. Types of Knee Braces

Knee braces for pain come in all shapes and sizes, each designed for specific purposes. What you choose will vary based on the type and severity of your knee pain.

  • Prophylactic knee braces are primarily designed to prevent injuries like ACL tears.
    • Suitable for athletes involved in high-impact sports (football, basketball, skiing).
  • Functional knee braces are used to stabilize a wounded knee. They offer a higher level of support and may include hinges or stays to limit certain movements.
    • Suitable for those recovering from ligament injuries or requiring extra support due to ligament laxity.
  • Rehabilitative knee braces protect the knee as it heals after an injury. Being adjustable, they allow for controlled movement while the knee recovers. Gladiator Therapeutics has healing devices that operate similarly to rehabilitative knee braces.
    • Suitable for individuals in the early stages of post-injury recovery.
  • Unloader knee braces help alleviate pain and reduce pressure in knee osteoarthritis cases. They come with a unique hinge system that shifts the weight away from the damaged part of the knee to improve mobility.
    • Suitable for people with knee arthritis where the pain is localized to one side.

Assessing Your Knee Pain and Needs

Although you can easily buy generic knee supports without a prescription, knee bracing should only be done on a doctor’s recommendation. Most knee injuries need comprehensive treatment management programs, and the wrong brace will only lead to bigger problems.

So, how do you find the right knee recovery device for you?

#1. Figure Out What Your Knee Issue Is

Why do you want a knee brace? Is it for protection, rehabilitation/healing, or something else? Different scenarios might require different knee recovery devices, and you’ll want to ensure you’re using the correct one for your needs.

#2. Estimate Your Knee Pain

Evaluate your knee pain thoroughly. Consider factors such as the location of the pain, its intensity, and any activities that worsen it. Also, think about your lifestyle and how the brace will fit into your daily routine.

#3. Consider Specific Features

Depending on your condition, you may need specific features in your knee brace. For example, if you have arthritis, you’ll need a brace with hinges to provide stability. If you’re recovering from surgery, an adjustable brace can help accommodate the healing process.

What to Look for When Choosing a Knee Brace

Picking a knee brace that suits your requirements isn’t as simple as walking into a sports store and grabbing the first thing you see on the rack. Instead, you’ll need to account for:

  • Size and Fitting: A knee brace must be properly sized to be effective. Most knee recovery devices come in different sizes, so measure your knee accurately to determine the right fit.
  • Material and Comfort: Knee braces for pain are typically made from neoprene, elastic, and fiber, amongst others. Consider your preferences and any allergies when choosing the material. Remember, the more comfortable the brace, the more likely you are to wear it consistently.

A good knee brace for pain can make all the difference to your healing journey. That’s exactly why we recommend the Gladiator Therapeutics Cerarecovery Knee Device. Perfect for minor soft tissue injuries or pre/post-surgical procedures, our knee recovery device helps reduce pain and inflammation, so you can heal without relying too heavily on medication.

Why You Should Consult a Medical Professional Before Choosing a Knee Brace

As mentioned, knee pain can have various underlying causes, including injuries, ligament damage, osteoarthritis, and more. You need an accurate diagnosis to know whether you should use any knee recovery device.

What’s more, medical specialists can offer personalized recommendations based on your condition, lifestyle, and activity level. They can factor in your age, overall health, and long-term goals to ensure your knee brace for pain fulfills your unique needs.

Don’t choose a brace at random. Talk to your orthopedic doctor to know which one you should use.

Tips for Using a Knee Brace Effectively

Got your knee recovery device? Here’s how to use it for maximum effect.

  • Make sure the device sits comfortably and snugly on your knee.
  • Position the brace correctly over your joint. Ensure any hinges or straps align with the intended areas of support.
  • Don’t over-tighten. Excessive pressure can cause discomfort and restrict blood flow.
  • Follow the manufacturer’s cleaning instructions to keep your recovery device in good condition. Regular cleaning can help prevent skin irritation and ensure the brace functions correctly.
  • Inspect your brace for signs of wear and tear. If you notice any damage, such as fraying straps or loose hinges, consider repairing or replacing it.
  • While a knee brace for pain can provide support, you must maintain an active lifestyle within the limits set by your healthcare provider. Avoid prolonged immobilization, as it can lead to muscle weakening.
  • Keep scheduled appointments with your doctor or orthopedic specialist to monitor your progress. They can adjust your treatment plan, including brace usage, as needed.

Get Your Gladiator Therapeutics CeraRecovery™ Knee Device Today!

Choosing the right knee brace isn’t rocket science, but it does need some thought and guidance. Remember, your knees are important, and caring for them is essential for a healthy, active life. With the right knee brace and a little TLC, your knees will be back in action in no time.

Ready to take a step towards healthier, pain-free knees? Discover the power of the Gladiator Therapeutics CeraRecovery™ Knee Device today! Contact us to learn more and move towards an active and comfortable life. Your knees will thank you!