Repetative Movment Injuries
Repetative movent injuries can happen to anyone! Everyone goes through a routine each day, whether it is getting up and brushing your teeth each night or going to work each day.
Each day an individual goes through a series of repetitive movements. They probably do not realize that each day they do the same thing, or close to it. There are ways to prevent repetitive injuries from happening. There are also exercises you can do to help prevent or relieve the pain from the injury. I personally do not engage in any repetitive movements each and every day anymore that could possibly cause an injury in the long run. My husband on the other hand does go through a series of repetitive movements each day at work.
My husband, Marcus, works in the US Navy. Each day he goes into work and does the same jobs each day. Each day he is assigned to move crate loads upon crate loads of boxes, or inventory that is placed on the ship. He goes through lifting heavy boxes and moving them up and down stairs most of the day. This does a toll on his back and knees each day. Another repetitive movement he goes through countless times throughout the day is bending over and stocking machines. One last repetitive movement he does each day is standing for hours. Not only does he stand for most the day, but he wears heavy boots. Each day my husband comes home he complains about his back, feet, knees and neck. This worries me because I commend him for all he does to begin with. Knowing he is in pain from the repetitive lifting bending and standing all day at work worries me.
Marcus has not been diagnosed with any injuries yet because he refuses to go to the doctor. I personally feel as though he should go because he could do serious damage to his back and neck from all the constant lifting. One thing he needs to watch out for is thoracic outlet syndrome. He mentions the pain in his neck shoulders and hands sometimes. I don’t think it has gotten this serious yet because he is still young and fit. What I have told him is to use better techniques for lifting the boxes and such. Instead of bending over he can lift with his legs and use good body mechanics. Also while he is standing I told him to shift his wait often. Also to always be aware of his posture.
When I was in college my athletic trainer told me a small key to help me with my back when I was just standing there. What this was is that when you are standing straight up just tuck my tail bone under and it would realign my back. This was because I had a pinched nerve in my back from the constant arching motion in volleyball.
There are many actions you can take in stopping RMI’s through body mechanics and ergonomics. Some good body mechanics consist of good posture and proper lifting techniques. By simply pinching your shoulder blades back, being aware of your posture at all times will take some strain off your back and neck. Also getting in close to the object and using your legs, by bending at your knees instead of your waist takes strain off the back. Some ergonomics the navy could consider would be allowing shipmates to wear sneakers (matching uniform) to allow comfort to the workers while lifting heavy work loads. Since this will never happen I push my husband to maintain good body mechanics at work. I hope he will listen to what I say each time he complains about his body aches from work.
My mother does a lot of computer work at her job. Now she had major back surgery a few years ago, and it still bothers her to this day. Also she has problems with her eyes and always gets headaches from looking at her computer all day. I try to promote good mechanics to her such as sitting an arms length away, placing both feet flat on the floor, placing her abdomen close to the edge of the desk, stretching frequently, and using an ergonomically designed keyboard. Now I did not mention these mechanics to her until I read them in chapter nine of the “Introduction to health care” second edition. This book has helped me better my body mechanics along with allowing me to help my family’s body mechanics.