Some jobs can take their toll on our body-especially if there is a lack of health and safety measures in place. It’s important to not ignore work-related health problems and get the right treatment when necessary. Below are just some of the common physical health problems that can be linked to work.
Many cases of back pain are work-related. In manual labor jobs, back pain is typically caused by heavy lifting – either by lifting loads that are too heavy or lifting incorrectly. As for many desk jobs, back pain can be caused by leaning over a desk for long periods. Being on one’s feet for too long can also cause back pain.
If you start experiencing back pain, it’s important to take time off to recover. Hot baths and stretches may help to alleviate back pain. Improving posture, improving footwear and being more careful when lifting can meanwhile prevent back pain getting worse.
Cramping pains in your arms could be the result of an RSI (repetitive strain injury). These can be developed from work related tasks such as typing, using power tools or working in cramped areas for long periods with little elbow room.
As with back pain, you may want to take some time off to help relieve arm pain. Wearing elbow or wrist braces may also help, as well as performing stretches. With conditions like carpal tunnel syndrome, you may be able to get surgery to alleviate pain.
Hearing loss is common physical health hazard for many people working in noisy environments such as music venues, construction sites or factories. This may be accompanied by tinnitus in some cases. Some people do not realise that their hearing has been reduced until it is too late. These hearing loss symptoms explain some of the things to look out for.
In noisy work environments, an employer should legally provide ear protection. It is important that you wear this ear protection to prevent further hearing loss. Once hearing has become significantly damaged, you may have no choice but to invest in a hearing aid to help you hear more clearly. Living without a hearing aid could be difficult as you may struggle to hear conversations or important noises like alarms and doorbells.
Respiratory diseases are a more serious work-related health problem. You are most likely to experience these issues when working in very dusty environments or when working around chemicals. Exposure to substances like asbestos can also cause serious lung issues.
Make sure that you are wearing a protective mask when working in environments with poor air quality (these should ideally be provided by an employer). If you are already experiencing trouble breathing, coughing or chest pain, it’s worth seeing a doctor – many respiratory issues can be treated providing that you catch them early enough.
High blood pressure
If you are constantly stressed as a result of work, you may want to check your blood pressure. High blood pressure can be caused by stress and has no symptoms on its own, however it can be deadly – it can increase your risk of developing various cardiovascular problems including heart attacks, strokes and aneurysms.
A doctor can carry out a blood pressure test on you. If your blood pressure turns out to be very high, you may want to consider taking steps to change your lifestyle to help bring it out. On top of reducing stress at work, make sure to kick bad habits like smoking, heavy drinking, excessive caffeine consumption, eating junk food and lack of exercise which can all contribute to high blood pressure and bad physical health.