Nearly nine in ten office workers have suffered back, neck or joint pain at work
Nearly nine in ten office workers (88%) suffer physical pain in their neck, back, or joints while at work – with 36% saying this pain distracts them from doing their job.
A poll of 1,500 employed adults, who work in an office, revealed that 90% have experienced stress in their job – and 82% believe this stress is contributing to the physical discomfort they suffer.
Six in ten have had to take time away from work due to their stress levels, with three-quarters wanting to look for a new job as a result of workplace stress – and 29% are already actively doing so.
Nearly a third (31%) are taking painkillers to manage their pain, while 47% visit a chiropractor – although 49% are not offered a chiropractor as part of an employee benefit scheme.
And now, chiropractic expert, Dr Juliette Hobson, has confirmed that physical health is closely linked to mental health – and has outlined five everyday mistakes people are making which can cause back problems.
She says one of the most obvious causes of pain in the back is a build-up of tension, as office workers are not doing enough to reduce the pressure and stress of their day job.
Another error Brits are making on a day-to-day basis is not having a water bottle to hand at all times – because keeping hydrated ensures joints are lubricated, which reduces aches in the back.
The doctor notes her clients with back pain often don’t eat enough foods which are rich in protein – which are important as they stimulate growth and repair within the body.
And also, when it comes to diets, too many sweet treats can cause issues around the back, as sugary snacks lead to inflammation and leave out nutrients which build strength in this area.
Dr Hobson’s final warning is that people make the simple mistake of not walking around enough, suggesting everyone should set reminders on their phones to do so – especially office workers.
She said: “People may not know, but our physical health and mental health are extremely connected – if the mind is stressed, then this signals to the body that it’s in danger.
“The body reacts to stress by switching off the short muscles around the vertebrae, effectively letting these stabilising muscles go to sleep, which makes them vulnerable to going out of alignment, causing spinal pain.
“This may cause the person further stress – meaning an ongoing cycle of pain and stress.
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“It may sound obvious, but getting up and moving around for 10 minutes, every 45 minutes, really can make all the difference.
“Walking around is a great way to get muscles engaged again after sitting still, when certain muscles haven’t been used in a while.”
Dr Hobson has teamed up with Equals Money, as part of its Pain Free Payments campaign, which aims to raise awareness about workplace stress causing physical discomforts.
The payment solution business, which commissioned the survey, found that the leading causes of workplace stress include an overwhelming workload (56%), a lack of communication (31%), and bad management (28%).
And nearly a third (32%) put it down to managing daily financial tasks – like filing expenses, invoicing clients, or receiving and paying invoices.
Ian Strafford-Taylor, chief executive officer of Equals Money, said: “The research clearly shows that UK workers are under a significant amount of stress – from overloaded work schedules, to the day-to-day worries.
“This stress is causing staff to take leave and even search for different jobs, which creates efficiency and profitability issues for businesses.
“But with innovative solutions, businesses can cut out frustrating financial admin for their teams, making workloads more manageable – reducing hassle and saving valuable time means organisations can focus on growing their business.”
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