Post Strapping Advice and Information
Why do Physiotherapists use tape?
Following an assessment, your Physiotherapist may use taping as part of your treatment plan to help your recovery. At Physio-Flex, we use different tapes for different reasons.
Supportive taping is a rigid type of tape which helps to provide joint support, reduce pain and help prevent further injury by preventing extreme ranges of movement. Athletes can also use this type of tape to enhance confidence during competitions.
Kinesiology tape is an elastic tape which can help to reduce pain and speed up the healing process by increasing circulation, reducing swelling, providing stability, and relieving the pressure on inflamed and painful structures. Kinesiology tape works to increase or reduce muscle tone depending on how the tape is applied and can help to re-educate the body to perform in a more optimal way.
What tape is used and why?
Kinesiology tape is almost identical to human skin in both thickness and elasticity, which allows kinesio tape to be worn without restriction of your movement. K-tape can be very colourful but the tape is all the same, the different colours are so you can style yourself out!
Zinc oxide or elastic adhesive band is generally used as a supportive strapping.
Your Physiotherapist has been trained in how to apply your strapping to achieve the best results. The tape will be applied in layers around or on the affected area. The skin should be clean and dry as this will allow the tape to stick easier.
In most cases it is not necessary to shave the skin before applying tape however if needed, we may recommend trimming the hair or shaving it before applying tape. Your therapist will discuss this with you should it be required.
How long should I keep the tape on?
Everyone is different and the duration of tape wear will vary. The kinesiology tape typically lasts for three to five days, even if you shower or swim with it. We recommend that you do not wear it for more than 5 days. The zinc oxide and EAB tape will typically last for 2 days.
Try not to soak your strapping as this may cause it to be less effective. If you do get it very wet, try to pat it dry as much as you can.
When removing the tape do not pull the strapping off quickly, soak it first and remove it slowly as this will help to prevent skin damage.
Most people have no adverse reaction with this type of treatment; however, on some occasions certain mild side effects can arise.
Skin stripping and tension blisters are the most common problems associated with taping. Less common types of skin damage such as irritant contact dermatitis can occur.
If you experience any itchiness, heat or redness around or under the strapping site, remove the strapping immediately.
- Remove the tape as described above to prevent skin damage.
- Don’t wear the tape longer than prescribed to reduce any chances of skin irritation.
- If you feel the tape is too tight and restricting your circulation please remove the strapping immediately.
- If your pain increases following application of the strapping please remove.
- If you have any concerns, you can contact your physiotherapist on 01506 237770 or firstname.lastname@example.org