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Improper lifting technique can cause a back injury

Are you required to lift heavy items as part of your job? Do you realize that one false move could result in a serious injury?

Improper lifting technique is a major problem in many industries, with some workers unsure of how they can keep themselves safe when moving heavy items from one location to the next.

Here are some things you should absolutely do:

-- Keep a wide base at all times. This means that your feet should be aligned with your shoulders.

-- Bend at the hips and knees. Squat down to grab hold of the item, as opposed to bending over at your back.

-- Lift slowly. There is no point in rushing the job, as this only increases the likelihood of an injury.

-- Keep the item close to your body.

-- Never lift a heavy item above your shoulders.

-- Take just as much caution when setting down an item.

Even if you use all of these tips, there is still a chance that you could injure your back when lifting a heavy item. If this happens, put the item on the floor and call for immediate medical assistance. After running the proper tests, your medical team can explain what happened and how to treat your condition.

Your injury, along with the nature of your job, may keep you out of work as you recover. If this happens, you should look into your right to receive workers' compensation benefits. The money you collect can be used to pay bills and other expenses until you can return to work.

Source: Web MD, "Proper Lifting Technique," accessed June 07, 2017

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