How do I choose a wrist brace?

20th Mar 2019

There are many reasons why you might need a wrist brace / wrist support.These could include a mild sprain/wrist injury, for immobilisation following wrist surgery, you may suffer with a long-term chronic wrist condition or you simply want a wrist support to wear preventatively, i.e. to prevent a wrist injury during sporting or normal daily activities such as repetitive strain injury (RSI).  Wearing wrist braces can help to reduce pain, improve function and speed up the healing process.

Things to consider when choosing a wrist brace;

What do I need / want the wrist brace for?

For Sport / Flexibility:

Sports wrist braces are designed to allow you to perform but also allows you to adjust tension / tightness to increase the level of support provided when needed.They also help to protect the wrist but still enables you to maintain a wide range of motion.  Consider at braces that feature breathable and moisture-wicking fabrics, these will help to keep you comfortable during exercise.  Our Aqtivo wrist braces give you an idea of the types of sports wrist braces available.

Aqtivo Sport Elastic Wrist Support

For Injury / Reduce Pain:

There are wrist braces for all levels of wrist injuries and the choice is vast.  Choose your wrist support based on the level of support you need - mild (wrist sprains / strains), moderate (torn ligament, stiffness, swelling) to severe (fracture, surgery) will help you decide on the style of brace needed.  The descriptions of our wrist supports tell you exactly what wrist conditions / injuries they are recommended for.

Mild wrist injuries require a less sturdy support, moderate may require stays or additional tension strapping for example.  Major tears or broken bones for example will require a much higher level of support, therefore you may wish to consider a firm control wrist support that allows joints and tissues to heal. 

Immobilising wrist supports feature metal stabilising bars, these can be on the dorsal and/or palmar side that usually can be moulded to your wrists natural shape for comfort.  These bars are usually removable which enables the wrist brace to be used as a step-down support for rehabilitation.  Wrist braces with removable bars enable you to take one or both bars out as your recovery progresses and the level of support your wrist needs reduces.

Ligaflex Pro Wrist Immobilisation Splint

For Long Term Chronic Conditions:

Quality – that is the key here, not only do you need a wrist support that provides you with the right level of support, you need you also need something that is built to last.  There are a variety of wrist braces available specifically designed for long term wrist conditions such as arthritis, De Quervain’s tenosynovisis, Carpal Tunnel syndrome etc.

Essencial Short Elastic Wrist Brace

For Prevention:

Playing sports or exercising can cause injuries as we put pressure or stress on various if not all parts of our body during physical exercise. There are many ways that injuries can be prevented or treated should an injury occur.  One solution is to use bracing or braces that help to support and stabilise specific areas of the body such as the wrist, elbow, knee or ankle for example whilst allowing the body to function normally.

You may have a job that you know presents a risk of developing RSI and decide to invest in a wrist support that helps to reduce this risk and provide support during your daily activities.

Pull on Wrist Brace

What else could be important when choosing a wrist support?

You may feel inundated with the amount of wrist supports available so here are some other things we feel are important to consider;

When and where you are going to use the wrist brace? All day, daytime, night time only or during sporting activities for example.Does the wrist brace suit this need?

What Level of Support Required?  Light-weight for mild injuries / conditions, mid-weight for moderate injuries or heavy-weight for complete wrist immobilisation.

Colour - If colour is important then look around there are many colours and colour combinations to choose from.Lighter colours can get dirty quickly.

Maintenance - How easy are they to clean, are they machine washable?

Quantity - How many will you need?Just the one or if you are dependent on it you may want to consider a second for when the other needs cleaning or if you loose it.

Adaptability - Is your wrist swollen?As you heal the swelling should reduce and therefore your wrist size will change.  A single / one-size wrist brace should adapt to these changes where sized braces offer a size range.

Fitting and Fastening Style - If you have limited dexterity then you should look at how the wrist support closes, can you put this on yourself?There are wrap-around designs and pull-on designs to choose from.

When ordering, do check the measurement guides as these can vary between wrist braces to ensure you order the right size.  If you are still unsure which is the right brace for you then please contact us, we are always happy to help.  Please seek medical advice before purchasing to ensure that you are choosing the right brace for your injury or condition.