9 Different Types of Back Braces and Their Uses

If you have had an injury to your back, you know how painful it can be. As we age, we are more susceptible to injury from a fall or impact, which takes time to recover and heal. Your doctor or specialist may advise you to wear a back brace during your rehabilitation.

This apparatus supports your back post-operatively, preventing re-injury and during activity, so wear it when given one. It will help adjust your posture while limiting your range of motion so you can relax the affected muscles during healing.

If you want to buy one to give you added support but are unsure what to get, these are the back braces you can use.

Back braces come in several basic design categories including flexible, semi-rigid and rigid.

Type #1: Rigid Back Braces

This back brace is constructed of hard plastic or metal and provides maximum support. Doctors typically prescribe them for serious back conditions and give you greater stabilization and restricted movement to decompress the spine following injury, fracture or surgery.

Type #2: Semi-Rigid Back Braces

With a semi-rigid brace allows for some movement while wearing it. They are usually made of neoprene and support the midsection for lumbar support and protect mild to medium back pain and posture correction.

Type #3: Flexible Back Braces

A flexible back brace utilizes flexible straps to give a lower level of support when you want protection during activities like working out. They allow for a full range of motion.

Type #4: Compression Back Braces

There are also compression back braces that are designed to reduce inflammation while increasing blood circulation. Some come with supportive splints; you can tighten the straps for your desired support and comfort level.

Type #5: Fitted Back Braces

You can get fitted for a back brace or buy one off the shelf that is prefabricated, and they will be made of metal, plastic or both with elastic compression bands. While wearing a back brace, it should be oriented to sit in the centre of the area where the injury and pain are to provide stabilization above and below the injury site.

Back braces are further grouped into the area in which they support. These are:

  • Thoracic Mid back
  • Lumbar Lower back
  • Sacroiliac Below the lumbar spine

Type #6: Thoracic Back Braces

This brace is fitted in the midsection of the back to help correct alignment issues like vertebral displacement. It is designed to only gently pressure your spine to relieve muscle spasm pain. Some causes for dorsal spine vertebral displacement include:

  • Trauma
  • Tumor
  • Age
  • Surgery

You will be fitted with a rigid brace and shown how to use it by your doctor, physiotherapist or orthopedic specialist. You will reduce the wear schedule gradually over time.

Type #7: Lumbar Back Braces

A lumbar back brace treats lower back pain, the most common type of back pain people experience. This brace will help stabilize the muscles in the lumbar region and reduce the occurrence of muscle spasms. It is worn like a corset, centred on your lower back and fastened tightly with adjusting straps for a good fit. Common reasons for a lumbar back brace are:

  • Lumbago
  • Poor posture
  • Myostatic inadequacy
  • Facet syndrome

Your healthcare professional may prescribe this brace to be worn for up to eight weeks, especially for postoperative healing but for a strain or minor injury, you can wear it for a few days until the pain goes away.

Type #8: Sacrum Back Braces

For injuries and pain in the base of the spinal column, you can use a sacrum back brace for support. This brace is tightly fitted around your hips to support the muscles around your tailbone and works like a belt that encases the hips. Lower back pain suffered includes those with:

  • Sacroiliac joint dysfunction
  • Pelvic girdle pain
  • Antepartum
  • Sports injuries

A sacrum belt back brace compresses the joints together so there is regeneration in the strained ligaments and muscles, but this process can take a long period. Time. It is common for specialists to recommend a patient wear the sacrum back brace for three to six months and up to 23 hours daily.

Type #9: Custom Back Braces

When you have a back injury, it is always best to see your doctor. You may have had a traumatic injury or are experiencing the effects of degenerative disc disease, but regardless of the reason for back pain, you shouldn’t ignore it. Your doctor will assess you and, if necessary, fit you for a back brace or recommend a generic one you can purchase from the store.

You can utilize these types of back braces for issues with your back. They provide proprioceptive input to improve your posture and offer support while you heal from your injury or surgery. Always follow your healthcare provider’s recommendations for the type of brace to use so it is suitable for the specific diagnosis and provides the correct level of mobility.