Back Brace Buying Guide
Back pain is a common problem amongst people nowadays. It’s no wonder thanks to the endless hours we spend at work with bad posture on a chair or at home slouching on the sofa watching TV. But even if you have perfect posture you might need help because of genetic spinal problems such as scoliosis or kyphosis.
If you suffer from back pain from a strain, injury or any other medical condition, a back support brace might offer extra support and pain relief for your back.
In this short guide, we will walk you through the different kinds of braces so you can know which one you need. Remember to check with your doctor if you have back issues before buying a belt!
What material is the brace made of?
In general, back braces can be made of either hard or soft materials. The material you choose will depend on your needs and back condition.
Hard braces limit much of your movement and are advisable for certain injuries while soft braces are made of more flexible material that can help guide your body to the correct posture.
All of these braces also deliver compression and warmth to make them more effective. Whether soft or hard, make sure to choose a material that’s both durable and comfortable.
Lower back braces
The lumbar area is a complicated issue and the only part of your body where you support yourself with your muscles and your spine alone, unlike the upper part of your back that is supported by your ribcage.
Because of this unusual dependency on your spine, discs might bulge more often than not. Hernias can also happen in your lumbar area.
A lower back brace belt might help put it all together, give you extra spine stability, force you to stand upright and avoid using your back muscles when you’re picking up heavy loads. This will let your lumbar spine take a load off and maybe heal altogether.
Upper back braces
Even though the upper back is not as troubled as the lumbar area, you can still have upper back issues. Bad posture is the main culprit for upper back pain.
No matter how good you think your posture is, eight hours’ worth of work on an office chair will get anyone slouching. A few hours’ worth of slouching and you will have gigantic back pain.
This type of pain could also lead to neck pain and headaches. A good way to avoid all these troubles is with an upper back brace, also known as postural braces. They will force you to keep an upright posture no matter what.
Kyphosis and scoliosis back brace
A curvature in your spine is more common than you think. Most people suffer from scoliosis or kyphosis, maybe both. Kyphosis is a curvature in your upper back that will give you a “round back” look.
Scoliosis is a side curvature in the spine, it can happen in your lower back, upper back or both. Specialized braces for each condition can help correct the spine to its normal place. Even if it doesn’t, it can prevent you from worsening your condition -whether it’s scoliosis or kyphosis-.
Back braces for women
Women suffer from their very own special set of ailments, besides the ones that affect men as well. They can have back pain consequence of large breasts or prolonged back pain from pregnancy. Women sometimes need a different set of back braces because they have different body type. Because of this, there are special braces created to fit the ergonomically needs of women.
With the use of technology, new ways of improving back health have appeared. One of these technological advancements comes in the way of magnetic back braces. These new era back braces allegedly help decrease back pain, but studies are contradictory and there is not much evidence about them working
Tips, prices, and recommendations
It is hard to tell how much the brace you need is going to cost, because of the wide variety of back problems and back braces out there.
But what we can tell you is how to get the perfect brace for you. The most important thing is your brace needs to fit you perfectly when you are relaxed. Do not tuck your stomach in when you try one.
Once you have put the brace on taking a deep breath, if it’s comfortable, that’s the right size for you. Braces are made from different materials; you should pick one you are not allergic to.
You also need to take into consideration that back braces are made to add extra support to your back but you should never rely on it. It’s best to use your back brace while you fix the core issues you have with physical therapy and rehabilitation.
Always check with your doctor if you’re feeling like you have an injury that requires attention.