I have worn a custom knee brace for my knee injuries and as a therapist and brace fitter I feel a certain kinship with my clients. When I injured my ACL playing soccer, I was so afraid that my soccer playing days were over. The pain was so intense and I was sure I would never get back on the field. Once I got my custom brace and finished my rehab, I was back! Without my custom knee brace to give me the stability I wanted, I would never have felt safe enough to return to the same level. But what I didn’t know at the time was that I would probably develop arthritis in my knee! When you are young and active, no one ever tells you that may get injured! No one ever tells you that the wear and tear on your joints could lead to premature arthritis! I quite often see patients who are still young, in their late 40’ s and 50’s who have stopped doing their activity because of arthritis in the knee. A lot of them will gradually gain more weight due to the drop in activity level and the weight gain doesn’t help with the increased joint pain one bit. It’s kind of like a vicious cycle- how do you stay active to stay healthy when arthritis in your knee prevents you from doing the activity you love? Well, motion is lotion – the more you are able to move, the more nutrients you send to your joints. Yes, it’s hard to move when you have bone on bone and the knee hurts when you walk. There are so many Osteoarthritis braces like The Thruster or the The Offloader that has a hinge that you can crank up to increase the amount of offloading on the joint space. The relief is almost instantaneous. There is no reason to let Arthritis slow you down, motion is lotion!
Stefanie Deboer, Certified Pedorthist, www.burlingtonorthotics.com