Work related pain osteopath surrey
We all experience pain from time to time. Sometimes we end up pulling a muscle in our sleep, and sometimes we walk into a wall because we’re not looking straight. Needless to say, the possibility of encountering an injury and experiencing pain is all around us.
Pain is often associated with our day to day physical duties. One such duty is our occupation and more importantly, how we undertake the role. Work, whether it involves physical labour or a more sedentary role, can be a source of bodily pain. For example, if you have a desk job that requires you to sit in front of a computer screen for large parts of the day, it can lead to several problems, such as eye strain, aching muscles, neck or back pain, stress and even mental health issues.
Therefore, it’s essential to pay attention to what you do and how you do it and how your body feels. However, with our hectic lifestyles, it can be challenging to do it effectively. But with the help of Osteopathy treatments, you can not only manage work-related pain but eradicate it entirely.
Work-Related Musculoskeletal Disorders
Osteopaths specialise in physical manipulation of muscle tissue and joints and provide advice on lifting, ergonomics, and rehabilitation programs to help ease the pain and tension in joints all over the body. Some of the hands-on techniques used to help with musculoskeletal injuries may include soft tissue manipulation, dry needling, joint mobilisation and stretches etc.
Work-related musculoskeletal disorders can be quite debilitating and arise from a collection of problems that affect the tendons, muscles, joints and nerves of the body. Most of these injuries are an outcome of overexposure and continuous pressure. Some of these problems include Carpal tunnel syndrome, thoracic outlet syndrome, bad backs, etc.
Let’s understand the different kinds of work-related musculoskeletal issues one may be prone to when working long hours. Work-related pain can be caused by several work patterns like –
- Rigid and restrained body movements.
- Frequent repetitive motion.
- Incorrect or heavy lifting
- Continuous force experienced on parts (like the wrist and the hand)
- A fast-paced work environment that does not allow for adequate recovery time.
It’s important to note that these work factors are not independently responsible for work-related pain. A combination of several contributing factors usually causes a work-related strain. Five key injuries responsible for work-related musculoskeletal disorders are listed below.
Muscle injury at work can take place due to frequent exposure to trauma on a particular muscle. This leads to microtears in the muscle fibres.
However, if the muscle doesn’t get enough time to recuperate, scar tissue can build up and assimilate into it. This leads to discomfort, reduced function over time and muscular pain. If a muscle is contracted or overstretched for a long time, then it won’t get the time to heal. This can lead to a bigger problem in the future.
Tendon injuries usually occur from a sudden strong overload of the tendon or repeated loading of the tendon over time. This can occur in tendons that are found inside tendon sheaths or with them. Tendons with sheaths are mainly present in the hand and the wrist, whereas tendons without sheaths are close to the shoulder, elbow, and forearm.
Sheaths carry cells that produce a lubricating fluid for the tendons. This lubrication mechanism is prone to faltering if the hand or the wrist is exposed to continuous movements without rest. Failure to lubricate the tendon leads to tenderness of the tendon.
Tendons in the shoulder, elbow, and forearm are vulnerable to bad posture and constant incorrect or unbalanced movement. This leads to injury to the fibres of the tendon.
The repeated motion, fixed posture or positioning of a body part can lead to severe nerve damage. This could be because of the stress caused to the tissues surrounding the nerves or direct compression of the nerves either from shortened or lengthened muscles or from external pressure. The compression of nerves can lead to weakness of the muscles and a numbing sensation.
The damage done to an intervertebral disc can occur over time or be sudden in onset.
Over time, it will invariably occur due to repeated movements or a lack of and will more likely occur due to ageing, poor diet, poor posture, lack of exercise and poor muscle strength and control.
A sudden onset will often lead to immediate sharp pain at the injured site (normally in the low back or neck). This is usually caused by lifting, bending with rotation or an accident at work.
A joint comprises the bones (and cartilage) and the structures that help support or move it. These will include the muscles, tendons, ligaments. Damage to any one tissue can create unbalanced forces on the joint.
These can occur from a sudden movement or accident in the workplace or build up over time from incorrect or repetitive movements or positions that the body is not used to.
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