America has a serious back pain problem – and it’s not just caused by heavy lifting. Damage done to the back from common motions like bending and twisting can build up over time, especially for workers in active, physically demanding jobs like logistics, construction, and agriculture. The cumulative pounding of these movements can increase the risk of workers getting chronic back pain, or work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WMSDs).
Locker room talk. A fellow was saying he was in bed for ten days after having his big toe operated on. “Ten days for your big toe?” “Yeah, the doc said my joint was shot and if I didn’t have a pin put in, I couldn’t walk and would be in a wheelchair the rest of my life. Man, I’d wake up in the middle of the night and my toe was killing me.”
In manufacturing and other industries where lifting is part of the job, disorders that affect the muscles and bones are a common problem. In fact, musculoskeletal disorders cause one-third of work-related injuries resulting in missed workdays, costing about $45 to $54 billion annually in lost productivity and treatment, according to estimates from the National Research Council and the Institute of Medicine.
On the road every day, transportation workers are responsible for the safe delivery of passengers, materials and goods across the United States. Bus drivers ensure our kids and family members arrive safely.
The workplace is not immune from the effects of the opioid epidemic that is raising alarm across the U.S. In fact, treatment practices for work-related injuries are likely contributing to the problem, since pain from those injuries is increasingly being managed with powerful prescription opioids.
When it comes to art, I have a big advantage. My wife of 53 years is an artist, retired art gallery owner and art critic. The other day, she sent me a link to an article in the Guardian titled Art works: how art in the office boosts staff productivity with a subtitle of A bright creative workspace can make employees more productive, lower stress and increase wellbeing.
Some policies linked to higher or lower impact of occupational back pain
December 15, 2015
Certain workers' compensation (WC) policies explain much of the state-level variation in costs and outcomes of claims for low back pain (LBP), reports a study in the December Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, official publication of the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM).
Posture is the way you hold your body while standing, sitting, or performing tasks like lifting, bending, pulling, or reaching. If your posture is good, the bones of the spine — the vertebrae — are correctly aligned.
After the summer months, many of us become less physically active. Cold temperatures tempt us to hunker down and “hibernate.” But that’s not healthy for our bodies. Let’s focus on proper ergonomics to support your back.