Menisci refer to the C-shaped disks located at the outer and inner edges of our knee joint – these pieces of cartilage add stability and cushioning to the knee, protecting it from bumps, bruises and abrupt shocks. A meniscus tear occurs when this cartilage is damaged, usually because of a sudden stop or turn – similar to Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) injuries, since these sprains also often result from an abrupt stopping or pivoting action, and can occur at the same time as a meniscus tear.
Depending on the severity of the injury, the patient may experience anything from mild discomfort while walking to difficulty bending or squatting without experiencing sharp, sometimes unbearable pain, in the most severe cases causing your knee to catch or lock and making movement impossible. Like some instances of ACL injuries, though, the aftermath of a meniscus tear can be alleviated through therapeutic bracing – stabilizing the knee joint to make up for the lacking support of your menisci, protecting the area from bumps and spasms to let it recover, and diverting excessive strain away from the knee joint. Here are our top picks for the best braces to go for if you have a meniscus tear, all meeting the criterion of being versatile for wear for different sizes and circumferences around the leg.
Winzone Knee Brace Support Sleeve
The last thing you’d want to be doing when your knee is sore and sprained is struggle to pull on a brace sleeve at the risk of jostling the injury – a problem well and duly addressed by this strap-around brace with durable Velcro fastenings. Adjustable straps accommodate various sizes, letting you wear the brace with the adequate support of its dual side stabilizers that not only help relieve ACL and meniscus injuries but Medial and Lateral Collateral Ligament (MCL and LCL) injuries as well. While many braces are either too malleable to be effective, or too restrictive to be comfortable or allow for maneuverability, the soft neoprene material of the brace is hardy and stabilizing without being restrictive, letting you bolster the injured area without risking aggravating your injury by uncomfortably pressuring the bruised or swollen joint.
Neoprene, a type of synthetic rubber, is incredibly resistant to wear and tear, physically tough but at the same time comfortable enough to wear against your skin without aggravating, the stretchiness just right to let your knee and leg bend and move naturally but not excessively. With a center knee cut-out ideal for allowing your knee flexibility in bending and letting you apply ice or ointment without having to take the brace off, users swear by this brace not only for helping support and relieve their injured knee, but also providing the adequate buffer to let them safely participate in sports and other physical activities without risking injuring themselves further.
KEN’S BUDGET PICK
TechWare Pro Knee Brace Support
With four spring stabilizer coils built in around the knee cut-out to give your knee cap and joint the proper amount of support and protection, the bi-directional Velcro straps let you secure this brace to suit your comfort and needs, making for balanced compression all around. Great not just for supporting meniscus tears but also ACL, MCL and LCL injuries and arthritis, the neoprene brace maximizes comfort with its moisture wick construction, making sure not to cause an uptick in perspiration, reducing discomfort from long hours of wear. Silicone grips also ensure the brace does not slip during movement and exercise, the elasticity allowing it to fit around a diverse range of circumferences. Available in two sizes, suited for men, women and children, this support sleeve can be used daily and during strenuous physical activities like exercise and sports.
EXOUS Knee Brace Support Protector
Diverse in the types of knee injuries it can help recover and rehabilitate, this brace offers all-round protection and support with its versatile design, a four-strap system ensuring that the brace will not slip for hours on end while holding your knee joint safely. The pair of smaller Velcro straps doubles as a patella band to isolate and support injured patella tendons, while the bigger straps offer all around compression, the support sleeve designed with dual flexible lateral stabilizers to brace your LCL and MCL post-injury to prevent overextension of the knee joint. With a half-inch gap behind the knee allowing it to bend fully without material scrunching up uncomfortably, the brace is designed for breathability and comfort.
The elastic neoprene and tough Velcro wrapping around your joints give you natural support that lets you move around freely while preventing excessive or accidental movement that may exacerbate the injury, so you can maintain an active and healthy lifestyle without worrying about worsening or derailing injury recovery. The Lycra inner lining and elastic sleeve also make this brace comfortable to wear and easy to have on without irritating the skin or causing discomfort.