Risks of injury when working from home
Take care of yourself while working from home
1. One of the main risks of injury for people working from home is lifting.
Whereas people who work in offices for larger companies will receive mandatory health and safety advice on lifting and other matters such as sitting posture, those working from home miss out on this information and in doing so risk injury to themselves.
Avoiding a back injury when lifting requires more than just bending at the knees, it’s also important to bend at the hips (not the lower back), keep the chest forward, lead with the hips (not the shoulders), and keep the weight close to one’s body.
2. Another big risk of injury when working from home is from sitting.
Working in an office from home typically involves spending a great deal of time sitting in an office chair —a position that adds stress to the structures in the spine.
Therefore, to avoid developing or compounding back problems, it’s important to have an office chair that’s ergonomic and that supports the lower back and promotes good posture.
Poor posture can easily cause or aggravate episodes of back pain and over time damage spinal structures. Especially for those not maintaining good posture and adequate back support, this greatly stresses the spine, which over time can lead to changes in the anatomical characteristics of the spinal structures and also back pain from problems with muscles, nerves, discs and joints.
In the seated position the lumbosacral discs are loaded three times more than standing, which is why it is important for many people working from home to invest in a good chair and back support, as sitting in an ergonomic office chair without back support either causes or exacerbates lower back pain and poor posture which won’t be productive for business.
3. Finally, and most surprisingly, homeworkers are also at risk of injuries that may not be their fault.
People often expect products to be quality tested and to do what they are intended, especially things like office furniture. But in today’s market of planned obsolescence, the consumer is really up against the wall in many cases and the law literature is full of stories of home workers suffering injuries at no fault of their own.
In one case, a man in his 50s bought an office chair. Sometime later when he sat in it, it gave way; one of the legs had broken. The man injured his tailbone, and took months to heal, making worse a back condition he already had. He pursued a Personal Injury Claim with the help of solicitors and successfully won compensation.
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