Lifestyle

How to Wear a Back Brace Comfortably

A back brace can help with everything from recovery post-surgery to issues with spine curvature, chronic pain, and more. Why you may wear a back brace can vary, but a common problem newcomers to it have is comfort. A back brace can take some time to get used to.

A back brace aims to improve spinal health and support the back, but it can greatly impact your motivation to wear it if uncomfortable. Let’s learn how to wear a back brace comfortably.

1. Ensure the Brace Is Properly Fitted

Talk to your doctor if you have any concerns. Your back brace should be properly fitted to your body. Ask questions and get concerns addressed before you leave the doctor’s office that first time. This way, you at least will know that the brace is not being worn improperly, which generally can cause injury and worsen discomfort.

2. Adjust the Tightness and Pressure As Needed

You may prefer your back brace a little tighter and more pressured than the next person, or you may prefer it not to be as tight. You should be alright if you get the support you need.

Don’t hesitate to adjust the tightness of the back brace if it’s uncomfortable. For the first few days and through that first week, you might want to experiment to eventually arrive at the pressure range you like.

3. Stay Cool and Focus On Your Temperature

At all costs, stay cool and comfortable. Stay in rooms that are properly air-conditioned. Have cold water ready to sip from during times of extreme heat. Try to be conscious of what you’re doing and invest in ways to keep the temperature within a more comfortable range.

4. Bathe Every Day and Use Cleaning Wipes

You want the skin to be clean to reduce friction and avoid the possibility of the skin developing blisters. Be sure to bathe daily and use cleaning wipes as needed on your skin. This will minimize the irritation and reduce the likelihood of an infection occurring.

5. Ask for Help Putting Your Back Brace On

Depending on your mobility, you may not be able to properly put it on or take it off. To ensure a back brace is properly fitted to your body, don’t hesitate to ask for help with the put-on or removal if you have family or a friend nearby.

6. Avoid Leaving Moisture Underneath The Brace

Some will use moisturizer to counter a back brace’s negative effects and discomfort. Moisture is the opposite of what you want. Any moisturizer or lotion will likely lead to more irritation and sores underneath the brace. Some corn starch can help improve comfort levels in hot weather without putting undue stress on the skin.

7. Apply Rubbing Alcohol Before Wearing A Back Brace

A little bit of rubbing alcohol will help toughen the skin. This can prevent irritation and skin breakdown from the back brace’s friction. If you are new to wearing a back brace and it’s only the first few weeks, add some rubbing alcohol into your routine of putting it on.

8. Wear a Shirt Underneath Your Brace

You may be tempted to wear a back brace without a shirt, but a clean and snug shirt can help minimize irritation in a major way. Ideally, you will want to find a shirt with no side seams, and that’s made from 100% cotton. This will provide adequate skin protection.

9. Wear a Back Brace Correctly

Do not attempt to make adjustments that go beyond the instructions given to you by your doctor. Wear a back brace correctly and follow the recommendations. Do not wear it longer than recommended.

Don’t do activities with it that you shouldn’t or do activities without it that you should be wearing it for. Some back braces are not meant to be worn during sleep, showering, and other activities but others aren’t. Know what’s the right process for your back brace.

10. Wear Loose Clothing Over The Back Brace

If you normally enjoy tight clothing, for a short while, switch to loose clothing. For most people, loose clothing is more comfortable than a back brace and can help you feel more mobile.

Tight clothing can feel strange when instead of being tight against your body, it outlines the structure of the back brace, which can be uncomfortable for some wearers.

11. Ensure The Back Brace Is Properly Cleaned

You will be provided washing instructions with your back brace. Follow them to a tee. Most aren’t made to be machine-washed or put in the dryer. You will likely need to hand-wash your back brace with water and mild soap online.

Afterwards, a brace can be laid flat or hung out to dry. No matter what, make sure your back brace is dry before putting it on again. A wet brace can irritate the skin.

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