Back pain is the leading cause of injury in the workplace around the world. Pain can be crippling even for those whose work does not require manual labor. Heavy lifting and exerting too much force on your back can cause injury, as can repetitive movements, particularly those that include twisting or rotating your spine, and sitting at a desk all day, especially if you have poor posture.
Minimizing your back pain at work can be achieved easily through gentle stretches, frequent breaks, or creating a comfortable yet proper workspace. Below are some tips to help ease or prevent back pain while at work.
Create a Comfortable Workspace to Practice Proper Posture
When standing, make sure your weight is distributed equally between your feet. Change your chair’s height so that your feet are flat on the floor or a footrest and your thighs are parallel to the ground. When seated, take your wallet or cellphone out of your back pocket to alleviate pressure on your buttocks and lower back.
If you use a screen, make sure your monitor, keyboard, mouse, and chair are all in the right place. Place your phone on speaker or use a headset if you regularly talk on the phone while typing or writing.
Remember to Stretch
Some health experts are gradually warning that sitting for long periods of time is harmful to one’s health, so taking a break to stretch is essential. Stretching at work will make you feel less exhausted by enhancing blood flow and nutrient delivery to your muscles.
Stretching is the process of “waking up” the muscles to alert them that they will be performing a mission. It warms up muscles by softly working them. By sitting still for too long, your muscles lose their strength and capacity to support your back, so try to be as active as possible while listening to your body’s signals.
Be Careful When Lifting Objects
Lift with your legs and tighten your core muscles when lifting and holding a heavy item. Keep the item steady and as close to your body as possible while maintaining your back’s natural curve. If an item is too heavy to raise safely, enlist assistance. When lifting loads, use lifting devices if they are usable.
Some people describe their symptoms of back pain as stiffness or aching in the spine or throughout the body, difficulty walking, sitting, or standing, and sensations of numbness or tingling.
Psychological symptoms of back pain in the body can include:
- Altering brain function
- Impairing attention
- Short-term memory
- Impaired judgement
- Decreased social skills
- Mood disorders including depression and anxiety
- Sleeping difficulties
- Decreased coping skills
If you or a loved one are experiencing back pain and would like more information about relief in Dallas, Plano, Garland, Mesquite, Richardson, or any nearby city in Texas, call ReMed Pain and Wellness Clinic at (214) 221-2525.