Lower back problems are the most common health conditions amongst the working population.
Sandra has taught science at a primary school for the past 10 years. Recently, she has developed lower back pain, which is made worse if she has to move or lift heavy objects and sit down marking for long periods. She has also noticed that her symptoms are much worse in term time.
We can help Sandra and many others through a range of self help resources and referral pathways.
DID YOU KNOW?
It is estimated that four out of every five adults (80%) will experience back pain at some stage in their life.
6 Steps to a better back:
1) Workstation - Make sure your workstation is set up correctly. You should not be stretching to reach your mouse and your monitor should be at eye level. Your chair should be fully adjustable and allow you to maintain the natural curve of your spine. EVEN IN A CLASSROOM!!!
2) Stretch - Many people have rounded shoulders from spending too much time at the desk. Reverse this by stretching your chest muscles. Bring the arms behind the back and bring the shoulder blades together. Hold for 30 seconds.
3) Bags - Avoid carrying bags over one shoulder and if you have to make sure you switch regularly.
4) Exercise - It is common for people to work hard on trying to achieve a flat abdomen. Make sure that you balance this out by strengthening your lower back as well otherwise you will end up with an imbalance leading to lower back pain. Work at a ratio of 1:1
5) Take a Break - Change position regularly and get up from a seated position at least every hour.
6) Pain - If you experience prolonged pain then see a professional as soon as possible.
Your back is far too important to risk injuring permanently.
BackCare aims to significantly reduce the burden of back pain by providing information and education to all people and organisations affected by back pain and to fund scientific research into the causes, prevention and management of back pain. Tel: 0845 130 2704. Our helpline is currently available in a limited capacity. We will be launching an improved service next year.
- Occupational Health
Cornwall Council's Occupational Health service is primarily concerned with ensuring that you are fit to work; that the job you are doing will not adversely affect your health and that you are not being exposed to any health hazards while at work. You can self refer to Occupational Health and contact them on Tel: 01872 323138 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Self Help Resources
Cornwall Health & Wellbeing Resource full of useful links and case studies on local support needs
- Back Health
- Simple Exercise Guide
- Back Pain Guide NICE
- Causes of Back Pain
- Back pain symptom checker
- The pain toolkit
- Back Pain Myth Busters Leaflet
Display Screen Equipment (DSE)