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How to minimize back injuries while at work

On Behalf of | Jul 8, 2024 | Workplace Injuries

Back injuries are common in many workplaces and can lead to long-term pain and disability. However, there are several ways to minimize the risk of back injuries while at work.

Understanding these methods can help keep employees safe and healthy.

Proper lifting techniques

One of the main causes of back injuries is improper lifting. To avoid this, always bend at the knees and keep the back straight when lifting heavy objects. Use the legs to lift, not the back. Holding the object close to the body also reduces the strain on the back. If an object is too heavy, ask for help or use lifting equipment.

Ergonomic workstations

Ergonomics plays a vital role in preventing back injuries. Ensure that workstations are set up to promote good posture. Chairs should provide proper lumbar support, and computer screens should be at eye level to prevent slouching. Adjustable desks can help workers alternate between sitting and standing, reducing the risk of back strain from prolonged sitting.

Regular breaks and stretching

Taking regular breaks and stretching can help prevent back injuries. Employees should take short breaks every hour to stand up, walk around, and stretch their muscles. Simple stretches like touching toes, twisting the torso, and stretching arms above the head can relieve muscle tension and improve flexibility.

Strengthening exercises

Strengthening the core muscles can support the back and reduce the risk of injury. Encourage employees to engage in regular exercises that target the core, such as planks, leg raises, and bridges. Strong abdominal muscles help maintain proper posture and reduce the load on the back.

Safe workplace practices

Workplaces should implement safe practices to minimize back injuries. This includes keeping walkways clear of obstacles, ensuring floors are not slippery, and providing proper training on safe lifting techniques. Using appropriate personal protective equipment, such as back braces when necessary, can also help prevent injuries.

Seeking medical advice

If back pain occurs, it’s important to seek medical advice promptly. Early intervention can prevent minor issues from becoming severe. Employees should not ignore back pain and should consult a healthcare professional for proper diagnosis and treatment. If you received an injury at work, you may need to apply for workers’ compensation to cover your medical and other costs.

By following these guidelines, workplaces in Ohio can help reduce the incidence of back injuries and promote a healthier, safer working environment.