Many jobs are hard on the back. These include any career that involves standing or sitting for prolonged periods, those that deal with heavy lifting and ones that require bending over. It is hard for many workers to accept the toll that the job is taking on them, but doing so increases their safety.
There are two primary categories of back injuries at work. One of these is an injury that happens as the result of an accident. The other is due to cumulative trauma from job duties. No matter what job you are doing, your employer should make sure you have the tools to protect your back. Here are some important points to know.
Body mechanics matter
You need to make sure that you aren’t putting too much stress on your back. You should lift with your knees instead of your back. If the items you are lifting are heavy, take the time to find someone to help you or use something to assist with the lift.
Employers should have policies in place about this so that employees aren’t expected to lift very heavy or even bulky objects alone. You might not feel the pain when you are lifting something heavy, but there is a chance that the action is causing issues with your back. Over time, you may notice that you are stiff or feeling achy. This is a sign of a cumulative trauma injury.
Another issue that can occur at work is that you have to bend over a lot. This is common for teacher and nurses. When possible, you should stoop down instead of bending over. Employers might be able to provide stools that you can sit on instead of having to stoop or bend over.
Trying to rush can lead to problems
Rushing through a task can cause you to use jerky motions that can injure your back. It can also cause you to miss simple risks that occur during these tasks. Some workers, including people who stock store shelves, might be on tight schedules to get their job duties done. Instead of expecting that workers can do these tasks faster than what is reasonable, employers should set realistic expectations.
By taking your time to complete jobs, you can ensure that you are paying attention to your body’s signals. If you start to feel any aches or discomfort, it is likely a sign that you need to pause and find another way of doing things. Pain is usually a sign that you need to stop and perhaps seek medical care.