No matter what reason you are wearing a wrist brace for there are some tips that you should adhere to in order to get the most from them.
First, make sure your wrist brace is the right size; ones you can buy at the drug store are usually specified as child, small, medium, large and extra large. These are generally measured by the circumference of the wrist they’re designed to go around and have a palm rest and a forearm length based on the average sized individual with that sized wrist. For 95% of people in the world, those wrist brace sizes are the right size. In cases where they aren’t the right size, it’s usually that they’re too small when wrapped around the forearm.
Next, check that you are tightening them in a way that will not aggravate your injury. Wrist braces help you by preventing you from accidentally flexing your wrist in a manner that would worsen your injury. The kind of injury you suffer will determine how much you can be moving your wrist.
If you are using a wrist brace for tendonitis, then tighten it so that it prevents lateral movement of the wrist. To determine this just put your hand straight out from your wrist, this is the plane defined by your thumb and pinkie and should be the parameters that your wrist’s motion is limited within.
If you are dealing with carpal tunnel syndrome, you should limit the movement of your wrist from not bending downward whatsoever and upward by only a few degrees. You should make sure that you have appropriate padding in your wrist brace when managing carpal tunnel syndrome.
Wrist braces that are made to confine the wrist for a sprain must totally confine it in both ways of movement and should cover more of the upper forearm also because that is where the ligaments that command the wrist movement run, and might look like Ace bandages more than traditional wrist brace.
Keeping yourself comfortable in a wrist brace means that you should look for things on the inside surface, like seams or loose threads, that might cause skin irritation. Some people recommend wrapping the hand and wrist and lower forearm lightly in gauze before putting a wrist brace on; this functions much the same way that your sock does in your shoe – it absorbs the sweat and keeps the seams of the brace from rubbing your skin and irritating you. Wash your wrist brace about twice a week; most can be run through a washer or dryer without risk.
Do not tighten your wrist brace too much. It should fit snuggly however; it should not prevent the blood flow to the wrist or hand. Many people tend to pull the straps as tight as possible. Put it on, tighten it, and do things you usually do and loosen it if it needed. To remember how tight you should fasten the straps, you can use a sharpie marker to note how tight the straps should go once you have determined this.
Tom Nicholson has spent years helping sufferers of carpal tunnel syndrome. You can click here to learn more about having asore wrist.