Watch your back.
Most people only hear that line in the movies, like in Clear and Present Danger when James Earl Jones cautions Harrison Ford about politics in Washington.
Well, the saying is true for disability, it seems. Back injuries are the leading cause of disability. So, here are three ways you can watch your back.
- Lose weight. If you are overweight, your back takes a lot of that extra stress.
- Stretch. Before exercise (or any physical activity), take a moment to stretch. Did you know you can stretch your back and upper shoulders by giving yourself a hug? How practical of you.
- Be cautious about chiropractics. While a visit to the chiropractor may be a good idea, disability insurance companies don’t tend to appreciate this field of medicine. So, use your best judgment.
Now, I may sound a bit disconnected from reality, right? You’re a dentist. Back pain comes with the territory. And study after study will affirm this idea. From one:
The dentists with symptoms experienced the workload as more unsatisfactory, were more burdened by anxiety, had poorer psychosomatic health and less confidence in the future than the dentists without symptoms. Specialists, both with and without cervico-brachial symptoms, were more satisfied with their personal control over their work and the stimulation from their work than were general practitioners. The specialists also had more self-confidence, and experienced less anxiety than general practitioners and head dentists.
Today is a good day to implement positive changes to protect your back—and your career. Check out this awesome (and detailed) article by Dentistry Today about stretches, ergonomics, and other best practices.