Measures to Prevent Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

What safety measures should you take at work regarding RSI and carpal tunnel syndrome? There are a lot of things you can do. First off, believe it or not, you should exercise good posture. Sit and stand up straight because a lot of these injuries are affected by nerves that may reach up to the shoulder, for instance. Good posture not only looks better, it’s also better for you. Stretching is another work safety habit you should get into prior to starting your shift. Athletes do it, workers in other countries do it, but Americans rarely stretch at work. This is too bad because stretching has good health and productivity benefits. By stretching, you’re warming up your muscles, joints, and tendons, so they’re not thrust right into full production mode from a cold start. And don’t think that you have to be doing jumping jacks or bending over and touching your toes in order to stretch. You can if you wish, but you can also derive a lot of safety benefit from tiny little stretching movements. Bend your neck this way and that. Shrug your shoulders a few times. Flex your wrists, both back and forth. Wriggle and flex your fingers and thumbs.

These all fall under “stretching” for purposes of work safety. They may not sound like much and you may actually feel a bit silly when you first start doing them every day, but they can make a big difference. Once you’ve seen how much of a difference they can make, you’ll want to do them every day, and not just prior to your shift – after breaks, coming back from lunch, or whenever you feel like it. They can’t hurt and can only help, so don’t neglect stretching. In fact, more and more companies are purchasing software for their workers that guides them through a stretching program every day. If your company doesn’t have one, talk to them about it. It’s an excellent investment in worker safety and can greatly reduce the number of days workers miss. If possible, you should also take frequent breaks – not official coffee breaks, but mini-breaks where you stay at your work area but just stop doing the repetitive motion for a minute or two. You might want to explain to your supervisor what you’re doing, but they shouldn’t have any problem with it. You can also do your stretching and flexibility exercises during these mini-breaks.

SHORTCUTS TO WORK SAFETY ARTICLES:

The Facts on Repetitive Stress Injury
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Measures to Prevent Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Preventative Measures: Mice
Other Ergonomic Habits
Leading Cause of Work-Related Deaths
Second Leading Cause of Work-Related Deaths
Violence in the Workplace
Romance at Work
Safety Concerns in an Industrial Setting
Hazardous Materials in an Industrial Setting
Tips When Working With Heavy Machinery
Forklift Safety
Tips For Working With Industrial Machinery
Miscellaneous Work Safety Tips