A hernia belt is one of several devices used to provide a degree of comfort and support to patients suffering with a hernia. In general, hernia belts are soft and relatively absorbent, hinder the ability of hernias to protrude, and make it possible to engage in a number of everyday activities. Along with customized versions, there are also mass produced hernia belts available at most drugstores.
While there are some variations on the construction of the belt, just about every design does have a few features in common. The material is usually lightweight and includes a padded elastic waistband that is configured to not roll or move out of position. While some models utilize buckles or large metal snaps to secure the garment in place, newer designs incorporate a simple hook and loop configuration that is easy to secure. Just about any type of hernia belt is machine washable, making it easy to care for the garment.
Hernia belts are one of several options available to people suffering with various types of hernias. Along with the belt, some patients opt for a hernia brace. Hernia trusses, which are essentially hernia belts with a few added features, are often helpful when the hernia is located in a lower area of the abdomen. A relatively new device on the market known as hernia briefs are purported to offer the same relief and support of hernia belts.
As with all types of hernia support garments, hernia belts are designed to apply enough pressure to keep a hernia in check before and after surgery. Prior to any surgical procedure, the belt can effectively hold the hernia in place, thus preventing any more damage occurring. After surgery, some patients are counseled to continue wearing hernia belts during the healing process. During recovery, the belts help to minimize any stress on the damaged tissue, improving the ability of the body to heal from the treatment.
While there are many proponents of hernia belts, some patients prefer to go with one of the other hernia garment options. One reason is that the material used for most belt designs is highly absorbent. The close proximity of the collected moisture to the skin can cause rashes that are very uncomfortable. When coupled with the fact that many designs for the hernia belt are somewhat bulky and do not hide well under clothing, hernia sufferers who are concerned about skin irritations or general appearance may opt for another option, such as the hernia briefs.