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America’s most common office injuries

While there are well-documented risks associated with certain inherently dangerous careers, you tend to hear less about the types of injuries and health issues that can arise when you work in an office environment. While office-related injuries are less well-publicized, they can still prove highly damaging, and they have the capacity to affect many aspects of your overall health and wellness.

As someone who works in an office, you face career-specific hazards, which may include:

Muscle strains and back issues

Even if you do not regularly lift large and heavy loads as part of your daily routine, even lighter loads, such as boxes of paper, or chairs and desks, can cause muscle and back strains if you do not lift them properly. When in doubt about the weight of a load, ask someone to help you, and rely on dollies and related methods if help is not available.

Falls and related injuries and issues

As an office employee, you are more than twice as likely to become disabled after an on-the-job fall than those who do not work within office settings. Your risk of a fall increases if the housekeeping in your office is not up to par, as boxes and other obstructions in your path can increase the chance of you taking a tumble. Loose wiring and electrical cords are also common causes of office falls, and dim lighting can exacerbate your risk.

Getting caught in between objects

As an office worker, you also run the risk of suffering an injury if you or parts of your body are stuck in between items. For example, office workers may close a drawer or door on their fingers, or they may get hair or clothes caught in paper shredders and suffer injury as a result. Paying close attention to what you are doing and avoiding multitasking, such as talking on the phone while performing job duties, can reduce your risk of an office injury.

While these are some of the most commonly cited office-related injuries, this is not an exhaustive list. Many office workers also experience hardship due to air quality issues, ergonomics and environmental hazards, among other potential culprits.