Myths in body mechanics
There are myths related to using proper body mechanics. Myths are based on personal experience, not scientific knowledge, and safety principals. Below are some myths in the use of body mechanics:
“ I’m going to do this just this one time”. When you make an exception any time, instead of doing it the right way, you run the risk of injury to you, and your patient. It is never worth the risk.
“Reaching behind or twisting really won’t hurt my back”. Twisting and turning, especially behind your facing direction, causes unnecessary strain on the neck, arm, shoulder, and back muscles. Always STOP, turn facing the direction of the intended reach, and then safely use your proper body mechanics to reach for something.
“I don’t have enough time to do it the right way”. In a fast paced world, we often try to fit in more things than we should. There is always one more thing to do on our lists. You ALWAYS have enough time to make the movement correctly. The alternative of a unsafe movement, and possible injury is always possible with short cuts.
“There is no one to help”. There may be someone to help that does not normally assist you. Ask a colleague or caregiver for assistance. If the movement is unsafe performing it alone, STOP and do not attempt it. Notify your supervisor that the movement requires more personnel to accomplish safely.
“I only want to make one trip”. Often we carry more things that we should, or try to balance items, in an effort to avoid extra trips. The heavier loads or unbalanced items, can cause strain and injury. Safely carry items that are not too heavy, bulky, or awkward in size. Ask for assistance.
“I never get hurt”. Just because you haven’t been hurt so far, doesn’t mean you won’t get hurt in the future. Make proper body mechanics a normal practice in your life.
Back pain is the most expensive industrial injury. Representatives at DeRoyal, a manufacturer of orthopedic soft goods, believed a total back hygiene program that included aggressive training in body mechanics would reduce the cost associated with back injury.
Safety is a fundamental in proper body mechanics. Safety may include the use of equipment, time management, skill set, and reporting unsafe circumstances. All of these are areas that can either be learned and practiced, learned and compromised, or learned and injury received.
Safety is a fundamental basis for proper body mechanics. Healthcare is based upon helping others with poor health, in a SAFE manner. If the healthcare professional is knowledgeable, and experienced, but doesn’t practice safely, it compromised the patient and worker.
Body mechanics are use of the musculoskeletal system to maintain the correct balance, and alignment of our bodies. Body mechanics are used in every motion, and movement. The focused usage of proper body mechanics in healthcare help to keep the patient, and healthcare worker safe. Education, and constant practice of good body mechanics, aid the healthcare team in making this a unconscious effort of everyday practice