Tired of painful and frustrating problems related to a herniated disc? Unfortunately, it’s a common problem and there are lots of people who experience a great deal of pain from this kind of condition. Since it tends to be an age-related condition when the spine becomes less flexible and fluid, it’s not likely to go away on its own. Finding the best back brace for herniated discs is one way you can relieve pain, and it’s a lot less expensive and definitely less invasive than surgery. The best types of back braces for this condition are the ones that give your spine the support it needs, keep pressure off nerves, and reduce your pain. Finding the right type of back brace from the millions that are out there can feel daunting, but it doesn’t have to be an overwhelming experience. We will take a look at the top five, finding the one that offers the best support, especially if you want to get back to a more active lifestyle.
1. ComfyMed® Premium Quality Back Brace
Our first pick goes to ComfyMed. This back brace is super popular among those suffering from some pretty severe back pain and is designed to deal directly with the problem of herniated discs by offering ample support. A removable support pillow comes with it, providing the extra support, and really taking the pain off the lower back. As a bonus, it addresses multiple spinal conditions too. Scoliosis, degenerative disc disease, muscle spasms, sprains, strains, and nerve injuries are treated by this brace as well because it promotes such good posture and takes so much pressure off the spine.
Provides strong support
Soft material with built-in hard support gives real pain real relief without being uncomfortable
Velcro and fastening system stays in place even when active
Runs small, may be uncomfortable for larger frames
Tip: Measure at the hip (from the top of your hip bones) and belly button when deciding on a size. Buy the average of the two sizes if hips are significantly smaller or larger in size compared to your belly.
2. AidBrace Back Brace Support Belt
The AidBrace Back Support Belt is also pretty popular, and comes in as our second favorite brace. It is custom designed to address herniated discs as well as sciatica, scoliosis, and degenerative disc disease. This brace has a curved design so it puts less pressure on the stomach and diaphragm area. This is a solid choice for anyone who still wants strong support, but who is concerned about a brace putting so much pressure on the abdomen that they struggle to breathe.
Covers core and back without restricting breathing
Gives strong support
Accommodates plus sizes
Tends to be bulky and doesn't fit well under clothing
Tip: Stretch the belt while putting it on, and wrapping it around, to achieve the proper sizing and support.
3. Vive Universal Back Brace
It’s always great to get a brace for a slipped disc, since not a ton of braces target this particular condition. What we like about the Vive Back Brace is that it helps to reduce pain from herniated and slipped discs. Its universal design also makes it easy to choose your size—one size fits all. Reinforced support keep this brace vertical. People with active lifestyles and/or individuals recovering or wanting to prevent reinjuring themselves will benefit most from this brace.
Here’s a video that shows you how to fit the brace
Customizable support with a universal fit
Protects against re-injury and supports the back
Great for active lifestyle
Some find that it can be a bit bulky under clothes
Tip: Watch the video, it definitely helps!
4. Back Support Belt & Lower Back Brace By Old Bones Therapy
Don’t let the name fool you. This brace is an all-around winner for the young too! It also has the added feature of coming with a heat pad and ice pack that you can place in a lined pouch in the brace to ice or heat your lower back. We absolutely love this feature, because, let’s face it, sometimes that back just needs some lovin’! Easy coloring- blue for ice pack, red for heat pad- makes it easy to pop the pack into your brace without a lot of thought. The ice will help to reduce swelling and inflammation, while the heat encourages blood flow, promoting healing and pain relief. The neoprene material insulates the ice pack so it stays colder for longer, which is great. And, it helps to maintain a nice amount of breathability if you’re going to wear the brace for a long time.
Relieves pain with compression, ice and heat
Neoprene wicks away moisture and sweat
Relieves pain with compression, ice and heat
Tip: Heat the heat pack in the microwave. Use the ice and heat pack separately on your neck, shoulders, knees, or just about any other joint or body part when you’re not using it with the brace. The packs are reusable and durable.
5. Lower Back Brace by Health Maxx Copper
Maybe you've seen the copper technology ads running on TV? Well, copper products definitely have a claim to fame, and this copper technology brace for back pain is no different, in our opinion. This is a medical grade back brace ideal for relief from pain related to sports and work. If sitting at a desk all day flares up your back pain, this brace is definitely going to help you. This brace helps to keep your back in the proper alignment, taking necessary pressure off your spine.
Copper has been used for a long, long, time to reduce pain and accelerate healing. Let it enhance your circulation, so you can recover quicker. Plus, the copper has anti-microbial properties and prevents odor. Awesome, right?! You definitely won't have to worry about stinking up the office. This is ideal for those who need lighter support or want to take some pain off their lower back caused by sitting all day.
Hides really well under clothes
Sophisticated design and color
Only offers lighter amount of support
Velcro can loosen a bit
Tip: Tends to offer lighter support, but is a lightweight product that hides well under clothes, so it’s good for the office.
What is a Herniated Disc?
Often time you hear about others who’ve developed a hernia from lifting a heavy objects. But, when you hear the term “herniated disc” do you really understand what that means? For whatever reason, it’s easier to picture a hernia having to do with some immense pressure in your abdomen area. But, a herniated disc is actually a problem with the rubbery matter that is found between backbones that exist in our spinal cords. The rubbery substance is shaped like a disc. Hence the term, herniateddisc. This disc has a soft center and a hard exterior. When the soft portion in the center of the disk pushes into the harder portion found on the exterior of the disc, the disk herniates or ruptures.
Symptoms of a Herniated Disc
The most common symptom people experience from a herniated disc is pain. Interestingly enough, there doesn’t need to be a lot of damage to feel a lot of the pain. Herniated discs also cause problems like tingling and numbness, especially if the herniated disc is putting pressure on a nearby nerve.
Is a Back Brace Good For A Herniated Disc?
Yes! A back brace goes a long way in helping to reduce your pain, and get you back to your everyday activities. Back braces, like our top 5, specifically reduce pain caused by herniated discs. But, they also help to reduce pain caused by other back problems which is great. However, it is important to know that overuse could have negative effects.
Caution When Wearing a Back Brace
Excessive reliance or overuse on back braces can lead to weakened core muscles worsening posture and increase back pain. To prevent your muscles from weakening, it’s a good idea to incorporate some strength exercises into your day and wear your brace to manage pain while healing and to protect your back during strenuous activity.
Getting Back to Your Day
Choosing a back brace is an important decision. It’s good to take your time and review your options. But, be careful about waiting too long to find relief and we ALWAYS recommend consulting with your doctor. Doing nothing can worsen pain symptoms. And, a lack of support during strenuous activities can potentially cause more damage.
Amanda has a Masters of Science in Nutrition from Syracuse University which equipped her with courses applied to licensure as a dietitian. She also worked as a Program Director for the Wellness and Fitness Department for the YMCA. She is well versed in physical fitness, with a certificate from the National Academy of Sports Medicine in physical fitness training. She has taught numerous fitness classes, including college courses in the Athletic Department, as an adjunct instructor, at the SUNY University at Buffalo. She currently resides with her husband in the NYC area, and loves to put her knowledge of anatomy and physiology to use by being active. Both her and her husband are self-declared "foodies."
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