Thursday, October 21, 2021


Reducing The Risk Of Common Work-Related Health Issues.

June 2, 2020 by  
Filed under Health, Weekly Columns

(Akiit.com) Have you ever thought about how your job affects your health? Many of us spend over 35 hours a week at work, and sometimes, the nature of our jobs and our schedules take their toll on our health and wellbeing. This guide outlines some of the most common work-related health issues and provides tips to help you stay safe at work.

Stress

In 2019, over 90% of US employees reported feeling stressed at work. Stress affects everyone from time to time, but it can be incredibly detrimental to health and wellbeing if left untreated. If you suffer from severe stress, this can elevate the risk of anxiety and depression, it can cause sleep problems and it can also make you more susceptible to illnesses and infections. Many people can manage stress using self-help techniques, for example, exercise, meditation and taking time out, but severe stress can be difficult to combat. If you’re struggling, it’s important to make your boss aware and to seek medical advice. There may be steps your employer can take, such as lightening your workload or providing access to support.

Hearing problems

Many jobs carry a risk of occupational hearing loss. If you’re exposed to high levels of noise on a prolonged or repeated basis, this can cause irreparable damage to the fragile structures that are found within the inner ear. If you work with power tools, or you’re part of a band that plays live gigs to thousands of people, it’s critical to ensure that you protect your ears to lower the risk of hearing loss. Your employer should provide you with protective equipment, for example, earplugs. It’s also beneficial to protect your ears if you commute via train or the subway, as the levels of noise exceed the point at which damage can be done to your hearing. 

Back pain

Back pain is one of the most common reasons to take sick leave in the US. Many employees spend long periods of time sitting at a desk or standing up, and this can elevate the risk of back, shoulder and neck pain. Good posture is key, and if you don’t have an adjustable desk and a supportive, comfortable chair, it’s advisable to talk to your boss. Your spine should be straight when you’re sitting, and your shoulders relaxed. If you’re hunched over your keyboard, or you’re stretching to reach the keys, adapt your workstation. It’s also critical to take regular breaks and it’s beneficial to exercise regularly. Activities like swimming, yoga and Pilates are particularly helpful for those prone to back pain. 

Accidents and injuries

Even the most harmless-looking workplace can harbor risks. Employers have a duty to protect their workforce by implementing health and safety guidelines, but you can lower the risk of accidents and injuries by following the rules, wearing suitable footwear, watching where you are going when walking and using the protective equipment provided. 

Workplace illnesses are relatively common. If you’re looking to steer clear of health issues, it’s important to be aware of the risks involved and to take steps to protect yourself.

Staff Writer; Sherry James


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