From back pain to Repetitive Strain Injuries, from stress to lack of concentration, you have to take care of yourself if you want to stay healthy at work, especially depending on your job.
Here are some of the more common workplace ailments and ways to combat them.
Back pain and aches
If your job involves heavy lifting, you should be taught how to do it properly to avoid back strain. The correct way to lift heavy objects is to bend your knees while keeping your back straight, then slowly straighten your legs. Alternatively, if you have a job where you sit at a desk for long periods of time, then correct posture will be very important to prevent back pain. When you sit, it’s important to support your lower back and make sure everything is within easy reach and at the correct level.
Repetitive strain injury
Better known as RSI, this can be a disabling and painful injury to a joint such as the wrist or neck. It is caused by bad posture or as the name suggests repetitive actions and is commonly found in computer users or those who do repetitive work. Correct positioning is essential for preventing these types of problems if you work at a computer and can also help prevent back problems at the same time. No matter what type of work you do, try not to stay in one pose for a long time. If possible, vary what you do and how long you spend doing it while trying to take breaks from doing other tasks to give your arms and hands time to recover.
Fighting stress is one of the most important things you can do to keep yourself healthy. This is because stress can affect people in many ways including making you physically sick with headaches, rapid heartbeats, and general aches and pains. The first step to dealing with stress is recognizing that you are stressed. This can be very difficult to do as it often creeps in slowly but can manifest itself in making you feel apprehensive and becoming more irritable and snappy. Luckily, there are ways to avoid it with a little careful planning and it primarily involves pinpointing what’s causing the stress. For example, if there is too much work to be done at once, try prioritizing it. Explain to your boss that it’s impossible to get everything done in the allotted time instead of worrying, given fair warning most people can be reasonable.
It’s also important to try and relax in stressful situations. Practicing deep breathing and relaxation techniques, perhaps even walking around the office breathing calmly can go a long way in reducing the frantic fight-or-flight response. Exercising regularly can also help, try getting out of the office during your lunch break or after you finish work and taking 30 minutes to an hour to do whatever fitness activity you enjoy. If you’re having trouble getting on with a fitness course, try mixing it up a bit, maybe swimming one day, long walking another day. These can all help relax your body and put you in a better frame of mind.
Lack of concentration
Sometimes constant stress and bad eating habits can lead to a lack of concentration. It’s tempting to just pop into the vending machine for a chocolate bar or a pack of chips, but you’re doing nothing for your brain or your waistline. Try to plan ahead and maybe incorporate healthy snacks into work. Also avoid too much caffeine, no matter how beautiful coffee is, drinking water can actually help your brain function better and not gain weight which can also be bad for you.
Overall, you can take care of yourself if you take time to think about what can help relieve various stresses and tensions.
This article comes to you from CS Healthcare, a specialist provider of reciprocal health insurance for those who are working, or have worked, in the civil service, public service, and not-for-profit sectors, including their families.
This article is intended as general information only. If you or a family member has a medical problem, please contact your GP or medical practitioner.
CS Healthcare is authorized by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority – reg no. 205346. The maximum age to join is 74 years 11 months unless you switch from the previous insurance in which case the maximum age to join is 69 years 11 months.
Daisy Fisher is a freelance health and wellness writer.