There are many jobs that require handling, lifting, pushing and carrying heavy items. Industrial workers or labour at cargo ships, hospitals, factories, construction and many other industries handle weight every day. Frequent weightlifting practise can result in musculoskeletal injuries i.e. strains and sprains, spasm of back muscles and many other types of disorders including sciatic nerve injury. There is a risk of injury for worker during weight lifting while twisting or bending to carry load. Cargo Industrial and construction workers are at high risk of developing chronic backache, sciatica, spasm and other skeletal disorders because they have to carry load more than the safe limit.
What are the Causes of Pain?
When we talk about industrial or construction workers who lift heavy weight everyday, there are many possible causes of back pain including the following:
- Frequently lifting heavy weights.
- Lifting the weight in an awkward position, g. with one hand only.
- Crouching, bending or stooping for consecutive many hours.
- Pulling, pushing or dragging heavyweights.
- Frequent twisting and stretching.
- Frequent posture changes.
- Assuming a bad posture during weightlifting practice.
- To spend a long duration of time assuming the same position.
- Working more than normal limits or working during an acute illness or being tired also causes an increased risk for lower back pain.
- In cargo ship workers, the frequent cause of backache is an injury from accidents, falls or contact sports. This result in problem ranging from minor muscle pain to disc herniation, nerve damage or fractures which may even damage the spinal This can cause permanent paralysis.
According to a study, more than 60 percent of workers in industries experience lower back pain. Most of them have chronic back pain. This is a 3rd most common cause of visiting doctors worldwide so be careful while lifting heavy objects.
How to Lift Heavy Objects the Right Way?
Here are some tips for safe lifting, by considering them you can become safe from back pain and other back problems including sciatica if you are a weight lifting worker.
1) Keep yourself in a stable position
While lifting the load, it must be kept in mind that both feet are apart with a leg in a slightly forward position to maintain balance. Avoid wearing unsuitable shoes or tight clothes because high heels cause you to slip, and tight clothes hinder you with maintaining correct posture.
2) Always hold the load well
As far as possible, give a good grip to the weight and hug it close to the body. It will result in a stronger lift than holding the weight tightly just by hands.
3) Keep your back straight while lifting
If you bend your back, hips and knees while lifting a load, it may cause spasm of your back muscles. So always adopt a squatting position during the initial phase of the lift, i.e. flex your knees keeping your back straight.
4) Always look forward
Always look ahead while handling a load, not at the load. This will be able you to see the surrounding well which helps in preventing accidents.
5) Move smoothly
Avoid adopting jerky movements or snatching the load because it results in difficulty in maintaining control and risk of injury increases.
6) Do not lift a weight more than your capacity
Always estimate well your capability of lifting load and do not exceed this limit. Thus you will be enabled to do safe lifting practice.
7) Do not twist while lifting
Avoid twisting your back while lifting and avoid leaning your sides specifically your back is in a bent position.
Your shoulders must be levelled and in the same direction as the hip.
8) Keep the load close to your waist
If you keep the load close to your waist as soon as possible, it will reduce pressure from your back and backache does not occur. Always put the heaviest side of load close to the body.
What are the Common Bad Lifting Habits?
While lifting the weight, you must avoid the following things.
- Do not stop breathing while lifting a load. Exhale out during this position. That’s important.
- While holding a load, never twist yourself or bend. If you are required to be turned, slowly turn on feet.
- Do not grip the object with one hand. Always use both hands.
- Never hinder your vision during weight lifting. Keep the object at the level of between mid-thigh to mid-chest. This will provide you with a safe
- Never forget to use personal protective equipment, e.g. gloves and shoulder pads etc.
Practise these safe lifting techniques to do your job with a healthy back.
How to Treat and Prevent Back Pain?
Backache, neck pain and other spine related problems can be handled at any stage.
Adopting back care habits before disease occurs is the best approach. We suggest you to use Backrack™ Back Support Belt as a primary tool to prevent back problems while you lift heavy loads. Lumber support belt increases lumbosacral support, thus decreases the myoelectric activity of erector spinae and reduces fatigue and strain during a lift. The belt causes redistribution of forces from the spine which acts on it while lifting a load. Using a support belt protects you getting from back pain and other problems, i.e. nerve compression, herniation disc and spasm of muscles.
If disease has taken place and you need a treatment, we suggest you to use the Backrack™ decompression device that helps you get back ain relief in the comfortof your own home. Backrack™ has a unique concept and application in back care. It’s 100% safe, CE marked product that mirrors the natural anatomical curvatures of the spine. When you lie on the rack and use it for few days as per the guidelines, it decompresses your spine and you start feeling relief from back pain without taking any medicine. It is the best non-invasive treatment for all forms of back pain.
This approach consisted of rehabilitation and disability limitation and used in the advanced stage of a disease providing a worker maximum approach to live a near normal lifestyle.