Whether you’re returning to work after a back injury, or you’re looking to avoid injuring your back while working, there are some things to keep in mind around where you work and how. Occupational hazards may exist at your place of work that it is necessary to avoid altogether, or find methods of increasing the likelihood of your safety. Having an injured back will not just make work difficult, it can make life difficult, as well, especially if you end up with chronic pain.
Exercising is always a good idea, even if it’s just a little. You can simply walk, which also helps strengthen your muscles, including your heart. You can speak with your physical therapist if walking is too difficult for you, as well. You can find options that work better for your lifestyle and your physical comfort.
If you commute to work, here are some suggestions to help with the pain that can cause:
You should know your limits before lifting anything. Don’t lift anything so heavy it is going to injure you or reinjure you. If you need help lifting something, get help – there’s no shame in asking, especially since your health is at stake. Here are some general steps for safe lifting:
If your work involves sitting at a computer, be sure your chair’s back is straight and adjustable. Always get up for 10 to 15 minutes at intervals that work for you, to walk around and limber up. Avoid standing for extended periods of time, and if you must, it is recommended to alternate resting either foot on a stool, to help reduce the overall load on one side of your body.
Back pain affects many Americans, and unfortunately the American workplace is often a place where many hazards exist that can cause or exacerbate back pain. Speak with a doctor or physical therapist if you’re not sure what is healthy to lift and what is healthy to do given the current state of your back and your health.