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Preventing Back Injuries Over the Holidays

Preventing Back Injuries Over the Holidays
A UPS delivery worker rushing to get everyone’s gifts delivered on time or Dad picking up that heavy box of decorations from the back of the basement closet every year have one thing in common – if they aren’t careful, both can seriously injure their back. Back injuries at work and at home are common – even more so when we’re busy in December. It’s easy to forget simple practices to protect your back when your mind is stressed about getting your deliveries done on time or going over your “to do” list for Christmas. These injuries are often associated with awkward postures due to the location of the package from the body, twisting during the lift, the weight and size of the object, the speed of the lift, the duration of lifting activity and extreme temperatures.
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The Blue Light Special

​I use my iPhone before bed to research projects and read the news. Who am I kidding, the reality is, I’m on Instagram and playing candy crush! But I can’t sleep. Researchers have indicated that blue light from these devices before bed might be bad for sleep. What is blue light? Blue Light occurs naturally in our environment. In fact, blue light is responsible for the color of the sky. But not all blue light is created equal. Artificial blue light is emitted from iPhones, tablets, computers etc. and has higher concentrations of blue light versus natural light. Researchers have identified the blue light emitted from these devices has an alerting effect and disrupts circadian rhythms.
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Ladder Climbing and Grip Strategies During Holiday Decorating

Falls from ladders represent a significant injury event in Canada and the United States. Annually, more than 40 000 people are injured in Canada (OHS Canada), and falls from heights are reported to be the 2nd most prevalent injury-causing event in the United States (U.S. Department of Labor – Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2011).

While many of these injuries occur in occupational settings, the number of ladder-related falls are also high when performing activities at home. Perhaps this is no more obvious than during the Holiday Season in December, as many of us climb on ladders to install lighting and decorations both inside and outside of the house.

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It is time to check your child’s backpack (and maybe even your own!)

Did you know that 82% of children report back pain related to their backpack?

Now that we’re a couple of months into the school season, it is a good time to check your child’s backpack and what is being carried inside. I’m mainly thinking about your child’s backpack, and if you are a teacher, then also your student’s backpacks. However, if you carry a backpack for work (or other activities) then you should also take a look at your backpack and how it may be affecting your comfort.
Children carry their backpacks to and from school daily. Depending on their grade and homework demands, the backpack could hold a binder or two, a textbook or two, lunch, and a set of gym clothing and shoes. Carrying a heavy backpack is concerning for anyone, but particularly for children during growth spurts.

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Safe Winter Walking

As the streets and sidewalks begin to be covered with snow and ice, and the risk of slips and falls increases. Whether walking is a requirement for work, used as a means of commuting, or as a form of leisure, the same strategies to improve safe winter walking apply. Below are a list of some of the strategies to consider, to make your walking safer this winter season.

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Gardening Safely By Applying Ergonomics

With the May long weekend upon us, this week we thought we would discuss some outdoor activities common for this time of year. One good example is gardening.

Gardening offers many benefits for people of all ages; however, it does not come without risks. The following blog outlines the benefits and risks of gardening, and provides easy to apply ergonomics solutions to prevent injury.

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