Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Is The Economic Slump Making Your Shoulders Slump?

With the economy in its current troubled state, people are working to ensure better stature at their job – they’re staying later, taking on greater responsibility and working harder than ever to evade that pink slip that so many have already received. While a heightened work ethic is essential during these trying times, it can wreak havoc on a person’s back resulting in everything from dull aches to debilitating pain. According to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS), back pain is often so severe that over 100 million work days are lost yearly – a trend that today’s workforce cannot afford to uphold.

According to New York City chiropractor Dr. Steven Shoshany, there are many steps Americans can take to ensure the time they put in at work doesn’t result in painful back problems.

Posture Perfection

Your body can tolerate being in the same position for roughly 20 minutes before it needs an adjustment. “Good posture relaxes muscles and makes it easiest to balance whether standing or sitting,” Dr. Shoshany says, adding that bad posture leads to muscle fatigue and injury.

Standing posture: Legs, torso, neck, and head should be approximately in-line and vertical, requiring the least amount of energy to maintain. Teachers and restaurant workers – who spend nearly seven hours a day on their feet – can stand in good posture by keeping one foot slightly extended and readjusting at least every 20 minutes. Resting one foot on a higher plane than the other is a great option if there is a set of steps of a stool conveniently located.
Sitting posture: Choose a chair that supports your back but if you have no choice, adjust it to meet your needs. The lower back should meet the chair and feet should be flat on the floor. “All of your joints should form right angles from your hips down,” Dr. Shoshany explains.

Have a nice trip, see you next fall!

Unsupportive shoes are difficult to walk in and can cause back-injuring falls. Dr. Shoshany explains that while the two may seem unrelated, the shoes people wear impact their ability to maintain healthy posture while sitting, standing and walking.

Nurses who often wear soft, resin-based shoes should opt for versions with ankle straps. The straps will keep feet secure, eliminating countless hazards as they rush from one patient to the next.
Wedges provide significantly more surface area than stilettos, making it much easier to walk and offering better support to the foot. Wedges are the safer option when racing from one appointment to the next and hurrying to get into cabs and trains.
Hardwood floors, marble and linoleum provide very little traction so “break” shoes in before wearing them to the office. Men should also be cautioned that when smooth soles are combined with smooth surfaces, spills are very likely.

Pain-Free Success

A common cause of back pain among writers and those in administrative or executive positions is a disorganized, cluttered workspace. According to Dr. Shoshany, all of the equipment you need should be readily accessible in order to limit the amount of squirming and uncomfortable reaching a person does.

If you’re on the phone a lot, use the speaker feature. If that’s not possible, use a headset or a shoulder rest extension.
Make sure your computer and monitor fit on your desk properly so your screen can be read from a comfortable position and computer discs can be inserted with ease.
Excess stress notoriously causes severe back pain and with the job market as shaky as it is, stress levels are higher than ever.

“Stress can cause muscles to tense, making you more prone to injury and also causing muscles to form painful knots,” says Dr. Shoshany. “As busy as everyone is at work, taking a quick walk outdoors or around the office is a great stress buster.” He added that a brief walk also provides an opportunity for the body to stretch and regain its healthy posture.
Taking the simple, common sense steps that Dr. Shoshany recommends can considerably reduce existing back pain and prevent more from developing no matter the industry or how much time you spend at work. If existing pain does not subside or continues to grow, Dr. Shoshany says that there are many in-office treatments that chiropractors can offer to mitigate the pain and get your back back on track.

About Dr. Steven Shoshany D.C, C.C.E.P.

Dr. Shoshany is a chiropractic healthcare specialist with a diverse background. He holds a doctorate degree from Life Chiropractic University. Dr. Shoshany specializes in both spine and sports related injuries. His background is in Chiropractic, Pediatric Chiropractic, and Sports Injury Management and is a spinal decompression specialist. Dr. Shoshany’s skilled chiropractic background creates unique insight into many problems. His practice has a primary focus of delivering highly effective, state-of-the-art, gentle Chiropractic care to people of all ages. Living and working in New York City offers Dr. Shoshany the ability to offer emergency Chiropractic care when needed. For more information, please visit www.drshoshany.com

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