Answers to Back Problems
Guest Expert Blog by Dr Fatemeh Rezaei-Sajadinia
Medzooma is constantly looking to provide ethical and useful information, advice and recommendations.. we would like to introduce Dr Fatemeh Rezaei-Sajadinia who will be joining the Medzooma expert panel and writing feature articles for M Magazine.
Back problems in manual labourers: reducing the cost of absenteeism is easy.
I worked for a time with a group of factory employees. As manual labourers, their backs were constantly under a great deal of pressure and were, invariable, mistreated. I educated in the art of Manual Handling in order to prevent incidences of sick leave due to back pain. In one year, absenteeism due to back pain reduced from 15% to under 2%. Imagine the national financial saving if every manual labouring business employed their own physiotherapist.
So, here’s my advice to employers and employees who don’t have access to a physiotherapist. Please feel free to print this off and use it as your safety ‘tick list’.
Manual handling is very underestimated! Yet it’s crucial to avoiding back pain and long term back damage… and it’s such a simple set of common sense do’s and don’ts.
There are 4 major areas you need to address before lifting anything -
1) The item – you should answer NO to all of these…
a) Is the item an awkward shape and size?
b) Is the item too heavy for you to carry on your own?
c) Is the item unstable (does it ‘shift, is it ‘unpredictable’?)
d) Do you actually need more than one person to move this item?
e) Is the item hazardous? (hot, cold, sharp)
2) The task – you should answer YES to all of these…
a) Is lifting from above the head or below the knees being avoided?
b) Is twisting being avoided?
c) Is the item manageable?
d) Do you know your route and is it clear?
e) Does someone else know what you’re doing and where you are?
3) The environment – you should answer YES to all of these…
a) Have you got enough room to lift and move the item?
b) If you’re on an uneven floor, do you know your route well?
c) Is your route clear of obstacles?
d) Indoors or outdoors – have you considered how your environment might change during the lift?
e) Is the place you’re moving to, ready to receive the item?
4) You – you should answer YES to all of these…
a) Are you fit and able enough to lift the item?
b) Are you correctly trained, if training is required?
c) Do you have the correct lifting equipment, if equipment is required?
d) Do you have the correct protective equipment, if equipment is required?
e) Have you answered all the above questions correctly?
The above list sounds like lots to learn, however, it’s mostly common sense. Sensible thinking equals sensible lifting. The reason this is so important is because it’s all about prevention and, as we know, prevention is always, always better than cure.
The most important rule of all when lifting is this one – use your head… not your back.
Thank you for reading – Fatemeh
About the author
Dr Fatemeh is qualified physiotherapist with over 20 years experience in aiding the fitness and wellbeing of people of any ability level.
She is one of only 380 specially trained practitioners in the incredible art of Spinal Touch.
She embraces every opportunity to prevent, treat, ease and cure back pain of any kind, in any patient, of any ability.
Dr Fatemeh is totally dedicated to bringing years of knowledge and experience to anyone who needs her help.
1998 – 2002: Fitness Instructor
1999 – 2002: BSc Physiotherapy from Northumbria University
2002 – 2010: Doctorate of Science in Physical Therapy from Grendal University
2002 – 2005: Rotational Physiotherapist
2006: Spinal Touch
2004 – 2008: Mission Foods UK – Physiotherapist
2009 – present: Consultant Physiotherapist in Harley Street
Head of Rehabilitation: Iranian Hospital, Dubai
Dr Fatemeh is more than happy to help anyone with back related questions.
Please direct your enquiries to: http://www.fatemehthephysio.co.uk/contact-fatemeh/
Or simply read more about me at: www.fatemehthephysio.co.uk
Look out for more blogs and advice articles from Dr Fatemeh on Medzooma.com and M Magazine our weekly online magazine full with News, Interviews, Reviews and Advice Articles on Health, Beauty, Fitness, Nutrition and Well-Being; delivered direct to your inbox every Monday for FREE. Subscribe today by clicking here>> M Magazine Subscription
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