- Back pain is the most commonly experienced problem at work. You can experience back pain due to a sedentary job where you sit for long hours, a job with heavy physical work like lifting heavy weights, or if your work involves repetitive movements like filing or stooping and lifting. Irrespective of its severity, back pain is annoying and hampers your quality of life. Not just that, it affects your desire to work and dampens your creativity and overall productivity. Here are a few simple tips that you can incorporate in your routine to permanently ‘delete’ this pain.
What causes back pain?
The most common factors responsible for back pain at work are:
- Poor posture
- Sitting for extended periods
- Driving a vehicle for hours
- Overstretching, twisting or bending repetitively
- Lifting heavy weights
- Poor physical health
- Although age is a factor that cannot be controlled, other factors definitely can be controlled. Maintaining a healthy weight and flexibility by performing various exercises and maintaining a balanced diet are some of the effective methods that can be useful in managing chronic back pain as well as preventing acute back pain from becoming chronic. The following tips, if used diligently, will help prevent back pain:
- Exercise regularly: Stay physically active and include various exercises like walking, swimming, and cycling in your routine. These exercises increase your back muscle strength as well as flexibility.
- Maintain a healthy body weight: The only solution is to lose the excess weight by following a healthy dietary plan and incorporating physical activities in your daily life. Aim to achieve weight appropriate to your age and height. The excess weight exerts pressure on the spine, which is what causes a backache. Take the pressure off your spine!
- Quit smoking: Doctors suggest quitting smoking to prevent damage to the shock-absorbing discs of the spine. Kicking the butt will not just cut back on the pain in the back, but also improve your heart and lung health. Talk to a healthcare provider or involve a buddy to quit smoking with you. A buddy makes it easier to quit this notorious habit.
- Improve and maintain body posture: While standing, distribute your weight equally on both your legs. If you sit in front of the computer, see to it that your desktop, mouse, and keyboard are at a proper level to avoid unnecessary bending and twisting at work. If you have to sit for long hours on a chair, select a chair that supports your spinal curves. Sit on the chair such that your thighs are parallel to the ground and your feet are resting flat on the floor or the footrest. Your forearms should be bent at the elbows, parallel to the ground, and supported by hand rests if you are working in front of a screen. The screen must be at eye level. Remove the contents of your back pockets as they may put pressure on your buttocks and lead to back pain.
- Manage repetitive tasks: If your job involves lifting weights, try using lifting devices or other alternatives whenever possible. If you have to multitask, for example, type or write and talk at the same time on the phone, use a headset or put the phone on speaker to avoid unwanted twisting and stretching of the back and neck.
- Lift weight in the correct manner: While lifting a weight, hold the object close to your body and maintain the normal curve of your back. Don’t twist or stoop, as it may cause back pain and lead to muscle cramps. While lifting heavy weights, don’t arch your back. You should bend on your knees and sit down, hold the weight, and then lift it while standing up. This transfers the weight to the knees and feet instead of the back, preventing sudden back pain.
- Regular breaks: Take a break and listen to the need of your body. If you sit for a long time in the same position, change your position. You can also get up and move around for a while before continuing work.
- To get rid of this constant botheration between you and a carefree day at work, click on HealthAssure to consult an orthopaedic specialist or physiotherapist. You can also visit our primary healthcare centre, where our expert doctors will help find the cause of your pain and provide you with tips to win the battle against back pain with exercises, medications, and physiotherapy.
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