Back injuries are a reality almost all workers face to some degree, whether you work construction or are forced to sit at a desk all day long. A back injury from work is extremely common.
In fact, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, over one million workers suffer from back injuries every year.
Back injuries occur so often because there are many different things that cause them, leaving every worker susceptible to a potential back injury or pain. Consider these common causes of back injury:
- Force – A back injury may arise when too much force is exerted upon the worker’s back when lifting or moving a heavy object.
- Repetition – The repetition of certain movements and having a slouching posture for too long are both causes of muscle fatigue and injury.
- Lifestyle – There are many medical conditions and lifestyle choices that contribute to back injuries such as obesity, sleeping position, smoking and stress.
While it may seem impossible to completely prevent back injury, it doesn’t have to be an inevitable fact of life. There are many ways to prevent a workplace back injury from ever occurring.
1. Proper Lifting Technique
The most important of all the prevention back injury tips is to learn the proper lifting technique. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, ¾ of all back injuries occur when an employee is lifting.
When your job requires you to carry or lift a heavy object, lift with your knees and tighten your core muscles. While lifting, maintain the natural curve of your back and keep the object close to your body.
2. Make Exercise Part Of Your Daily Routine
Although this is a tip for a healthy life in general, it’s also a key component to preventing back injuries. It’s important to maintain a healthy body weight in order to lead a healthy life and keep a minimum amount of stress off your back.
The Department of Health and Human Sciences recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity along with strength training exercises at least two days a week.
Although long days leave your feeling tired and drained, exercising is extremely elemental if you want to prevent back injury.
3. Listen To Your Body
Although it may sound a little silly, it’s true that your body knows what it can and can’t do. If your job requires sitting for an extended period of time and your body feels tired and stiff, get up and stretch. Take a walk around. A little modification goes a long way for your posture.
If you are required to lift heavy objects and feel that you honestly cannot lift a certain object, ask for help. If you think you can’t lift something, you’re probably right. Risking lifting the object could result in a back injury that might alter your life forever.
Think about life with a back injury. Everything would be different. Maybe you wouldn’t be able to perform certain tasks, or maybe you’d be unable to work. Maybe you would be unable to do much of anything. Taking the proper steps for preventing back injuries are easy to follow and could be the difference between the life you live now and a life spent handicapped with pain.
Ready learn more about how to effectively promote workplace safety for preventing back injuries? Call 800-523-5367 or click on the button below to speak with a workplace safety specialist at Arbill.