Ergonomics

Ergonomics is the science of designing a person's environment so that it facilitates the highest level of function. A person's work environment should fit his or her capabilities and ensure safety and comfort. Application of ergonomic principles can increase worker’s performance and productivity. It is necessary to reduce risks of work related injuries such as repetitive strain injuries and postural syndromes. It can also prevent development of chronic medical conditions. Ergonomics is about making things more efficient. By increasing the efficiency of a tool or a task, it shortens the length of time it takes to accomplish the goal.

Work related musculoskeletal disorders are one of the leading causes of lost workday injury and illness. Workers in many different industries and occupations can be exposed to risk factors at work, such as lifting heavy items, bending, reaching overhead, pushing and pulling heavy loads, working in awkward body postures and performing the same or similar tasks repetitively. Exposure to these known risk factors increases a worker's risk of injury. Common problems associated with poor design or habits include discomfort in the back, neck, shoulders, hands, wrists, in addition to headaches and eyestrain. Individuals regularly working with computers should pay special attention to these symptoms.

Physiotherapy addresses injury prevention in the workplace by identifying and eliminating risk factors. It includes modifying tools used within the workplace, education and training on work place health and safety regulations and managing job related stress. Injury management and rehabilitation help workers return to work within reasonable time frames after an injury has occurred.

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