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Back, Neck & Shoulder Pain

Work Related Musculoskeletal Disorders

Back, Neck & Shoulder PainBeing a ‘desk jockey’ may be professionally challenging, but it can also impact your health and wellness! According to recent government figures, work related musculoskeletal problems with the back or neck affect over 80% of the population. An estimated 6.9million working days were lost due to the issue, with an average of 14 days lost for each case.

Commonly termed, work related musculoskeletal disorders [WRMSDs] can develop over time and cause pain in joints, muscles and tendons. They can be episodic or chronic, be mild or severe and can also develop after a work related accident. Although rarely life threatening, WRMSDs has impaired quality of life for a significant percentage of the population. Repetitive tasks in a work setting may lead to areas of the body such as wrists becoming stressed. This is usually because there is insufficient recovery time between movements.

Avoid Problems like Shoulder, Neck & Back Pain

Jobs which are physically demanding such as construction or removals, are renowned for leading to back problems, but more sedentary roles can be equally troubling. The main cause of problems arising from computer work for instance, is how long you sit at your desk. Our bodies are not designed to sit for long periods of time, so consequently aches and pains result. Leaning over and hunching forward places immense strain on the neck, back and other vulnerable areas.

There are several ways of lessening or avoiding altogether this type of problem, that are simple and fast. Carefully conceived stretches and exercises can help, along with ergonomically designed aids created to alleviate discomfort. Not only do these measures benefit the person suffering, but in a work situation the employer does not have to contend with persistent absenteeism. Studies show that muscle and vision problems are significantly reduced by wider use of ergonomic work stations in the work environment

Back Problems Created by Bad Posture While Working

Lower Back Pain
Back pain is without doubt one of the most common problems to affect people working on computers. Slouching forward causes your spine to be out of alignment, which in turn puts a strain on your back muscles and ligaments. Anybody with undiagnosed pain should of cause consult their doctor, but there are also some sensible guidelines for everybody.

Quick Relief
You can relieve tension while sitting in your chair by tilting hips forward while rounding your back, then tilting hips back again. This will loosen up back muscles and ease any stiffness.

Longer Term Pain Relief
Your back should be supported by the length of your chair, forcing you to sit up straight. If there is a gap between your back and the chair, place a cushion in between. Check that feet are flat on the floor and not dangling, as this is likely to create back strain, and use a foot stool where needed. Strengthening your core muscles with regular abdominal exercises will alleviate strain and take pressure off your back.

Exercise, Stretches & Physio Can Help With Joint & Muscle Pain

Shoulder & Neck Pain
Thus type of pain can be excruciating, and even the slightest movement can cause extreme discomfort. Necks and shoulders may be thrown out of alignment by simple factors such as using a keyboard placed too far away. This means you have to reach and lean your upper torso forward in an unnatural position.

Fast Neck Relief
Before you pop a painkiller, try some neck and shoulder stretches, which can be more effective than tablets. Stand or sit upright with your spine straight, and slowly push your head forward chin jutting out. Reverse the motion moving your head back as far as you can, and repeat this four times. Keep your head level all the time without tilting up or down. For neck and shoulders, bend your head down to the right side, as if touching your shoulder with your ear. Allow your left arm to hang heavily for a deeper stretch, hold for about 20 seconds and repeat on the opposite side. Do this four times.

Long-Term Solution
Make sure your computer monitor is straight ahead of you, so you are not looking up or down at it. If possible use an ergonomically designed chair, and ensure your elbows are bent at 90-degree angles.

For expert advice about this type of issue, call the team at Sports & Spinal Physio on 01277 219553 who have a long history of helping clients with pain and discomfort.

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