Tradies Health Month, which runs throughout August, places a firm focus on the health of Australia’s tradesmen.
While we’ve seen some improvements in the last few years… statistics from Safe Work Australia tell us that our trade industry accounts for a massive 58% of serious claims for worker’s compensation, yet makes up less than one third of Australia’s workforce.
Time off work due to poor health, injury or illness can have a significant impact on families, businesses, communities, the health system and the broader economy. This impact will grow if we don’t take steps to change our behaviours around health and seeking appropriate treatment. Melbourne Osteohealth, Osteopathy Australia and The Australian Physiotherapy Association are calling on all tradies, their employers and families to get behind Tradies National Health Month this August and spread the message.
Tradies, make your health the most important part of your toolkit!
We ask tradies to be proactive about their health, and get any muscle and joint pain or other health concerns seen to promptly. Don’t wait until your pain becomes worse, don’t wait until you can’t work. Tradies should prioritise their health so that they can continue to be active in the important roles they play in the Aussie workforce, their families and the community at large. Australians’ reliance on the work that tradies do is enormous, so we need to encourage them to seek proper, evidence based care before their small niggles become large issues that potentially lead to time off work.
Tradies typically perform a range of demanding physical tasks every day including lifting, carrying, pushing and pulling heavy objects or using tools that require large amounts of force such as shovels, hammers, etc. They also tend to do this for extended periods. Another important factor to consider is that many manual jobs need to be performed in difficult positions, whilst bending or lying down, reaching around corners and even working on unstable surfaces. These factors may put workers at risk of physical injury and harm.
To bring awareness to Tradies National Health Month, we would like to offer ideas and advice on how to deal with the demands of a manual job and the best way to avoid injury. In our line of work we spend the best part of the day try to push and pull other people into therapeutic positions.
The old saying “prevention is better than cure” could not be more true!
There are a lot of things you can do to avoid injuring yourself. It can be helpful to focus on your overall fitness and ensure you are in the best physical condition possible. Regular strength and endurance training will mean your body is better able to deal with the physical demands placed on it. Paying some attention to core strength is a great way to reduce the risk of low back injuries, one of the most common injuries associated with manual lifting. All that said, giving your body the time it needs to rest and recover is vital, so regular stretching as well as spending some time on mobility focused exercises can help aid your recovery after a big day and keep you moving freely.
Osteopaths can play a critical role in providing early healthcare intervention support–through diagnosing, treating, and preventing disease and disability through physical means. Working in partnership with their patients, osteopaths can help aid recovery from injury, reduce pain and stiffness, and increase mobility, and also prevent further injury.
Osteopaths are experts in human movement. They understand how your muscles, bones, joints and ligaments all work and how injuries develop.
If you do experience an injury it is important that you seek help early, so you can get diagnosed and access the best treatment for your condition. All our health professionals at Melbourne Osteohealth are registered with their respective accrediting bodies, and use the best available evidence to decide what treatment is best suited for you. This may involve referral to your GP for medications, and we may refer you for diagnostic imaging.
Our Osteopaths and Exercise Physiologists can offer help in a range of ways including manual therapy, exercise prescription and educating you about your condition so you know how best to manage it. We’ll aim to get you back to work in better condition than ever.
Are you a tradie experiencing pain that won’t go away? Is it interfering with your ability to work or participate in family life?
Click on the link below to book an appointment with our Osteopath, Dr Nicola Stevens, she’ll help you understand what’s going on and what you can do to get over it.