Saturday, March 24, 2007

Five myths about pains and strains in the workplace

Facts about MSD may not be what you expected ...

"Repetitive stress injuries, also known as musculoskeletal disorders (MSD), cause more than 40,000 workplace injuries in Ontario each year.

The Industrial Accident Prevention Association has compiled five common myths that need dispelling in order to start eliminating pains and strains in the workplace:

Myth #1: MSDs only develop in workers involved in manual labour. It can’t happen to me.

Reality: Regardless of industry or profession, MSDs target all individuals in the workplace. MSDs affect the muscles, tendons, ligaments, and nerves in the human body, and develop as a result of repetitive, forceful, and/or awkward movements.

Myth #2: MSDs occur most frequently in the arms and hands, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, rotator cuff syndrome, tennis elbow (epicondylitis), and shoulder pain (shoulder myalgia).

Reality: A MSD can occur in almost any part of the body. In fact, the body part most often affected by a MSD is the back. The latest research suggests that most spinal discs are injured by cumulative weight being applied – essentially, it’s like “the straw that broke the camel’s back.”

Myth #3: People need to be reminded to bend their knees when they lift in order to prevent an MSD.

Reality: Yes, it’s true that we have greater strength and mechanical advantage by bending the knees. However, it’s just as important to maintain your back’s natural curves, especially the arch in your lower back, when lifting an item. Also, take a close look at the job you’re doing and see if you can reduce the amount of lifting, carrying, and climbing."    (Continued via canadian hr reporter)    [Usability Resources]

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