Back and neck pain is especially common among factory workers, construction workers, and individuals who use heavy tools or machinery. However, a number of office employees also suffer from back and neck pain due to prolonged sitting or standing. Continue reading for more information on why your job may be the cause of your chronic pain.
Common Overuse Injuries
An overuse injury is caused by the repetitive motion of a specific part of your body. For example, individuals who use vibrating hand tools or computer keyboards may develop carpal tunnel syndrome, which occurs when the passageway of ligaments, median nerves, and tendons at the base of your hand becomes compressed. Similarly, individuals who repeatedly lift, push, pull, or carry heavy items may suffer from a number of musculoskeletal injuries, such as lower back pain, herniated or bulging spinal discs, spinal stenosis, pinched nerves, and sciatica.
Tips for Preventing Injury
There are several steps you can take to reduce your risk of injury in the workplace.
- Practice safe lifting techniques: Bend rather than stoop, keep your back straight by tucking your chin down, lift with your leg muscles, and keep your arms and elbows close to your body.
- Maintain proper posture while sitting: Keep your back straight and shoulders back, with your buttocks touching the back of the chair. You will also want to bend your knees at right angles and keep your knees even with your hips. Your feet should stay flat on the floor.
- Take frequent breaks: Take a short break every 30 minutes when sitting or standing for long periods of time so that you can stretch your back and neck muscles.
The best way to determine the source of your pain is to consult your pain management specialist. Call Carolina Back Institute at (919) 781-9950 or visit us online for more information on your pain relief options.