Sunday, April 10, 2011

Neck Braces, Rigid Collars, Cervical Orthoses - A Guide on Bracing The C-Spine - Part 5

How Do You Know A Rigid Collar is On Correctly?

Each collar is made differently, but there are some overall rules of thumb that can apply to all collars.

Snug Fit and Chin Position

First, it is important to always wear a brace snug, never loose. This includes the use of a "rigid cervical collar". This ties into the position of a cervical collar as well. With many cervical collars that are available today, it is important that you can see the patient's chin, when they have the brace on. If a person has on a neck brace and their chin is tucked inside of the cervical collar, chances are that the brace is not doing what it is designed to do. You do not want to see a patient's bottom lip first when you look at them, while they have a cervical orthosis donned. Unless the brace is the incorrect size, or made improperly, (which should not be the case if a licensed orthotist provided it), then you should always be seeing the patient's chin when they have the brace on.

The Words on The Brace, Why Its Important To Look From Outside The Brace

Almost any brace that is provided today is designed so that other individuals (besides the patient) can look at the collar and read the words on it the right way up. Remember that the manufacturer does not want to be forgotten about. After all, they have spent a lot of time manufacturing this product and they are proud of their work. Therefore, if an "outside" individual, who is looking at at the brace, can not read the writing then something is usually wrong. If the person looking at the collar can not read the words correctly, then it is quite possibly on upside down.

Arrows Located On The Brace

Lastly, if there are any arrows on the collar, they are usually meant to point upward when the brace is on as well. These are the arrows that the manufacturer put on the brace. - This general example applies to any brace that you see a patient wear. If you have any questions about the fit and function of your current collar, then it is wise to communicate with your providing brace specialist for more information.

*Note: This is health information. When it is time to get personal, medical advice on bracing, then it is best to speak with your local, licensed orthotist on the subject. This is good information, but this is not medical advice.

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