FEELING GREAT: Is your job costing you your health?

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Hidden inside every occupation is a risk of injury.

Its just that some occupations spring to mind more quickly as being likely to cause a person to have something like back pain or constant neck stiffness, than others.

Plumbers, bricklayers, joiners and plasters are all aware of the likelihood of injuries to things like their wrists, back or knees.

It comes with the territory and is obvious for all to see as such tradesman spend hours upon end in awkward positions trying to fix things in your homes, or as you pass by a building site.

But what about the not so obvious?

The admin person sat at a desk all day or your hairdresser?

Whenever I visit, I talk constantly to my hairdresser, Siobhan Meadows from the Throston area of Hartlepool, about the need for her and her staff to be aware of their postures.

And she’s always responsive and puts my suggestions to good use to ensure her and her staff protects themselves.

And what about people like nurses and teachers? Well, the latter are two such professionals that might surprise you to learn are constant visitors to my physio clinic. Here’s why:

Most people by now are aware of the dangers of sitting in the wrong position for too long.

I bet you’ve had countless of those workstation assessments or had your health and safety guy point that out many times?

But what most people don’t realise is that the real danger of suffering problems with your back is actually caused when you stand and lean forward or lean over, for a prolonged period.

So when a nurse is leaning over a bed to attend to a patient, or a teacher leans forward to help his or her pupils, at that point they are at the most risk injury.

Your spine has to work nearly a third harder than it wants to when you lean forward.

And within a profession like teaching, particularly if that teacher is educating the really young, then you could have problems at the lower back because of frequent need to stand and lean, long periods sat at a desk marking and then here’s the crucial bit, and many teachers or nursery nurses of young children make this mistake, is to actually sit with pressure on their knees in a twisted position.

Such postures are horrific. And the cumulative effect of day in and day out of doing such a thing will often be the reason that a teacher or a nurse will suffer back pain or chronic knee problems somewhere in their 40’s or 50’s.

The moral of the story is this. Whatever your profession, or how ever you make a living, if you are spending 8-10 hours per day doing something, it pays to make sure that you are aware of the downside of doing it, and more importantly, what you need to do to remain as active and as healthy as possible – for the entirety of your career.

Better to sort these things out as early as possible than to put up with constant knee, shoulder or back pain later in life.

If you need exercises for your lower back they now are here permanently for you to access and use www.paulgoughphysio.com/back-pain/exercises.