No matter the type of job you have, the majority of workers (even the most sedentary) are at risk for suffering back pain at work. In fact, the financial cost to businesses due to employee lower back pain is more than $100 billion per year, including missed work totaling 264 million lost days annually.
Whether it’s dull, achy, sharp, or stabbing, back pain makes it hard to focus on your job responsibilities. Unfortunately, many occupations place significant demands on your back. Even routine office work can cause or worsen back pain.
Causes of Back Pain and Back Injury
Longer working hours with extended sitting, standing, and moving is responsible for a majority of occupational back pain. Beyond mere pain, the main causes of a back injury include lifting or moving heavy objects, repetitive movements, especially twisting of the spine, and long periods of inactivity without proper back support. Bad posture, stress, muscle strain, and obesity also contribute to back pain. Craning forward, a slouched back, and an extended or raised neck can all contribute to back pain.
Tips For Preventing Back Pain at Work
Most of us have to work, and we can’t always have a say in our workplace conditions. However, workers can take steps to avoid and prevent back pain and back injuries at work by:
- Paying attention to posture.When standing, balance your weight evenly on your feet. When sitting, adjust the height of your chair so your feet rest flat on the floor or on a footrest. Remove your wallet or cellphone from your back pocket when sitting.
- Lifting properly.When lifting and carrying a heavy object, lift with your legs and tighten your core muscles, holding the object close to your body. If an object is too heavy to lift safely on your own, ask for assistance.
- Modifying repetitive duties. Try to alternate physically demanding tasks with less demanding ones. Avoid unnecessary bending, twisting and reaching.
- Keeping your back muscles strong. Stay strong by doing back-strengthening and stretching exercises at least twice a week. Also, get active and eat a balanced diet as being overweight can strain your back.
Texas Workplace Back Injury Lawyers
While back pain frequently causes a major disruption to work and daily life, damage to the spinal cord may cause irreversible paralysis. If your back injury or spinal cord damage happened while you were at work or resulted from an accident that was someone else’s fault, you may be entitled to compensation. At Dax F. Garza, P.C., our Houston attorneys help back injury and spinal cord injury victims seek the money and other benefits they are entitled to. Contact us today.