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  3. 7.3 million work days lost to musculoskeletal disorders

New statistics from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) show that 7.3 million workdays were lost in the UK in 2021 due to musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs).

MSDs occur in most industry sectors, but higher injury rates are found in the forestry, fishing, agriculture and construction industries. The most common MSD symptoms are a pain in the muscles and joints, and stiffness in the upper limbs and back. Pains in the back can be caused by lifting, crouching, and bending. Spending extended periods in the same position can also cause injuries.

Wearing work boots that support the whole body helps reduce MSD injury risks, as well as preventing slips in wet conditions. Footwear needs to fit well and feel comfortable, as sore feet caused by uncomfortable footwear can be a distraction from work and prevent someone performing their role at their best.

Protective footwear expert Simon Ash said:

"When selecting safety footwear take it seriously and consider both the long-term benefits and potential impacts incorrect choices can have so that more workers can stay safe on their feet."

To reduce MSD risks, businesses should provide training for workers on how to safely lift items. Sustained posture should not be maintained for more than 20 to 30 minutes. If activities cause pain, they should change positions stop the activity. Where possible, workers are advised to rotate tasks during a shift from repetitive tasks to lighter ones.

If employees experience bad muscular pain or early signs of inflammation, they should seek medical help.


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