Chronic and acute knee pain affects the lives of one in four American adults, and the rate has increased over 65% in the last 20 years. The knee joint is the largest in the body and bears nearly all its weight with every step, so it’s no wonder that a number of conditions can contribute to pain and instability. In nearly every case, it’s important to prevent further weakness and damage to the joint before you can begin the healing process of repairing it. When it comes to improving knee joint pain, can a knee brace help?
The Mechanics of the Knee
Joints are spaces where different bones come together, and in the human body, there are six types that support movement of the limbs and central axis. The knee is considered a “hinge” joint, which allows for flexion and extension of the lower leg in relation to the upper leg. The three bones of the knee joint are stabilized by a web of muscle, ligament, tendons, and other tissues like bursae, but when there are problems like injury or inflammation, uneven wear, or even muscular imbalance, it can result in knee pain conditions that can become chronic. As part of a comprehensive treatment plan, knee braces can help keep the joint stable while other modalities improve the internal environment of the knee.
How Knee Braces Help
Knee braces can be an important component of a treatment plan, because joint tissues are nourished and supported by movement, but it’s hard to stay mobile when that movement becomes a cause of pain. While there are different braces for different conditions, the main benefit of a brace is that it provides important structural support for the parts of the joint that are injured or imbalanced. What kinds of knee braces are available?
- Knee sleeves slip over the knee like a sleeve and supply compression to control swelling and pain.
- Wrap-Around braces use Velcro straps to provide more support than a sleeve, while still being easy to put on and take off for training.
- Hinged knee braces are typically used after a surgical procedure, or when a patient needs more structure to help maintain alignment during movement.
- Patellar Tendon Strap is an easy strap to apply for relieving tendon conditions like jumper’s knee.
- An Unloader Knee Brace is one that moves weight off of the injured part of the knee joint.
Your knee pain treatment providers will be your best resource in determining which brace will be most effective and supportive for you after a thorough diagnosis of the source of your pain.
How Has Knee Pain Changed Your Activity Levels?
At ViscoGen™, our main focus is your return to an active lifestyle using the most advanced and efficient treatment methods for less pain and improved mobility. Using a comprehensive care approach, our medical professionals are committed to helping manage and improve every aspect of your acute or chronic knee pain condition, from injections and viscosupplementation to physical therapy and bracing. Please call today to learn more about how ViscoGen™ can help!