Spring Cleaning Safety
Spring is a time of renewal and change. The world awakens again after many dark, cold winter days. The birds chirp, the flowers bloom and we tend to make an effort to clean up our homes and yards. Spring cleaning can be a wonderful thing, but it can also lead to accidents and injuries. Below are some tips to help you keep your spring cleaning safe this year.
Warm up your body. We tend to be less physically active in the winter months, which means come spring our bodies are deconditioned and often tight. Before you start an active spring cleaning project such as raking, painting, lifting, etc. take 10 minutes to get your body warmed up. Walk a few laps around the yard or house to get your blood flowing and muscles warmed up. Next, stretch out your muscles. Once you are warmed up and stretched out, then start your project!
Use proper body mechanics. This goes for any and all daily activities! If you are not engaging the proper muscles, you are putting yourself at risk for injury. Most people are aware that you should lift with your legs, not your back. But they often forget the part about hinging at the hips. Keeping your spine and head aligned, stick your bottom out and bend at the hip joint, then bend the knees. Avoid bending, lifting and twisting. Pay attention to your body placement. Move your feet and turn your entire body, instead of twisting the upper body. When lifting, keep your arms tucked into your body. The further out your arms are, the larger the amount of force you are putting on your body. If you aren’t sure how to properly engage the correct muscle, ask us at your next appointment!
Ask for help. When in doubt if you are able to accomplish a task on your own, such as lifting or reaching, don’t hesitate to ask for help! A lot of injuries happen when we are stubborn and try to accomplish big tasks on our own. Slow down and ask for help! Your body will thank you later.
Use caution. Make sure you are placing step-stools and ladders on solid, flat surfaces. Pay attention to your surroundings. When using chemical products, make sure you know what you are using and what precautions you need to take. Also, note that “natural” cleaner doesn’t necessarily mean non-toxic. Use the proper protective equipment such as rubber gloves, safety glasses, masks, etc.
A safe spring cleaning involves using proper body mechanics, proper product use and a little common sense! If you do find yourself sore or injured after a spring cleaning project, schedule an appointment with us!