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The Proper Way to Handle Back Injury Condition in Workplace

The Proper Way to Handle Back Injury Condition in Workplace

Back pain is a common cause of work absences, workers’ comp claims, and loss of morale and productivity. Most back pain is caused by on-the-job accidents resulting from lack of physical fitness, heavy lifting equipment, and poor work habits.

This article delves deeper into back injury, discussing the common causes and risk factors for a back injury. Read on to get enlightened on this subject matter. Who knows? Maybe you will find yourself handling back injury conditions in the future, and this knowledge will come in handy.

What Portion of Workplace Injuries Are Back Injuries? 

Back injuries account for 25 percent of all workplace injuries. Most back injuries that occur on the job result from repetitive motion, carrying heavy loads, bending or twisting while carrying or holding heavy objects, or prolonged work periods in one posture. Employers are mandated by law to provide a hazard-free environment for their employees to reduce instances of work-related injuries. However, lifestyle factors such as regular exercise and avoiding excessive use of alcohol or recreational drugs could prevent such cases.

If you have suffered a back injury on the job and need medical care, look no further than New York Spine Specialist. We have a back pain rehabilitation program designed to help patients return to the highest level of independence and function and improve their overall social, emotional, and physical quality of life. Contact us today to set up an appointment.

How Long Can I Be Off Work for Back Injury?

Report any pain or signs of back pain to your employer as soon as possible. If you are suffering from mild back pain, you can be off work for a week or two. If you are suffering from severe back pain, you can be off work for four weeks or more. If you have sought medical care and treatment, gone through diagnostic studies such as x-rays, MRIs, or CT scans, rested as instructed by your doctor, and taken pain medication. Still, your back pain has not subsided. It would be best if you saw an orthopedic doctor a soon as possible. You should also see a doctor immediately if you experience the following warning signs: fever, nausea or vomiting, loss of bladder or bowel control, and weakness or numbness in your legs.

Here at New York Spine Specialist, we know that back pain symptoms can range from mild, dull, annoying pain to persistent, severe, acute pain. To prevent back pain from interfering with your work, our specialists provide expertise in interventions and procedures to alleviate back pain, helping you return to normalcy in the shortest time possible. 

What Is the Most Common Cause of Back Injury at the Workplace?

The most common causes of back pain include:

  • Heavy Lifting: Lifting a heavy object or straining to move heavy loads can result in back injury.
  • Repetition: Repeating movements that involve rotating or twisting your spine can hurt your back.
  • Inactivity An inactive job can cause back pain. This is especially true if you have poor posture or sit on a chair all day, as this encourages bad habits.
  • Diseases: At times, conditions can weaken the lower back. This, in turn, causes severe pain and interferes with your quality of life. 
  • Smoking: Smoking can also contribute to back pain. Coughing from smoking can cause back pain. Moreover, smoking reduces the flow of blood to your lower spine, resulting in spinal disk degeneration.
  • Occupation: Workers who perform physical labor such as health care workers, construction workers, and factory workers are at an increased risk for a back injury. Back injuries typically result from poor lifting techniques such as twisting or turning while holding or lifting heavy loads.

For example, a nurse can strain her back by lifting and moving patients repeatedly, a factory worker working on an upper level of a factory can sustain a spinal cord injury when a falling object strikes him, and truckers are more prone to sustaining back injuries because they stay seated for long periods, causing the back muscles to become atrophied.

When your back pain lasts for more than three months, it becomes chronic back pain. Chronic back pain can cause you to stay home from work more frequently, prevent you from performing your day-to-day activities, affect your sleep quality, and limit physical activity. Do not let chronic back pain turn your life upside down. Contact New York Spine Specialist and let our spine specialists develop a treatment plan that will help you achieve optimal health.

How Can Employees Prevent Back Injury?

Most workers can prevent back injury by taking some simple precautions, including:

  • Modify Repetitive Tasks: Try to alternate work that requires you to lift heavy items with work that requires you to lift nothing at all. Put your phone on a loudspeaker or use headphones if you usually write and talk on the phone at the same time.
  • Lift Properly: Do not lift anything with your lower back. When you lift, bend your knees and keep your back straight. As you stand up, use your leg muscles to support your body, maintaining the natural curvature of your back.
  • Pay Close Attention to Your Posture: Bad posture puts unnecessary strain on the back muscles and spine, resulting in back pain over time. When standing, ensure that your weight is balanced evenly on your feet. To maintain good posture when sitting, use a chair that supports your back. If your work requires you to stand for most of the day or night, wear shoes with good support. The wrong shoes can strain your back, spine, and legs.

What Are 3 Key Risk Factors for a Back Injury?

Age: Back pain is common among seniors. As you advance in age, the discs between your vertebrae lose flexibility and fluid. Even though you cannot control your age, you can strive to maintain a healthy weight, minimizing stress on your back.

Weight: Being overweight or obese or gaining a significant amount of weight abruptly can put stress on the back, resulting in low back pain.

Fitness: Back pain is common among physically unfit individuals as back and abdominal muscles may not be strong enough to support the spine.

Contact New York Spine Specialist for Back Pain Injury Treatment

According to the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), over 600,000 American employees sustain injuries to the back every year. While no work-related injuries are linked to injuries to the back, these injuries can cause debilitating pain, loss of productivity, and other symptoms.

If you are unable to work after sustaining a work-related injury, you have come to the right place. At New York Spine Specialist, we provide interventional treatment of complex and common problems related to the spine. We also offer expertise in interventions and procedures to alleviate symptoms from spine-related conditions such as herniated discs, fractures, and back pain. We also treat common pain types, including back and neck pain, whiplash, herniated disc, sciatica, and scoliosis.

Contact us today at (516) 355-0111 or request an appointment by completing our contact form. Our physicians are prepared to develop a treatment plan tailored to your needs; therefore, you can rest easy knowing that we can treat your work-related injury and help decrease your pain, enhance function for your daily activities, and improve your quality of life. Our doctors accept workers’ compensation insurance, no-fault, and other health insurance plans. Call us today!