Home caregivers have numerous responsibilities they must manage in order to ensure the safety and protection of the elder individuals they assist on a daily basis. While the job of a caregiver is to create a safe environment that will prevent common injuries among the elderly, many don't take the time to think whether they are doing everything they can to protect themselves from injury. Back and shoulder injuries are common among caregivers due to the strenuous nature of the occupation. From lifting heavy medical equipment to positioning an elder’s body or moving them to a new location, it important that caregivers take precautionary measures that will reduce the risk of back injuries.
How to Safely Lift Heavy Objects
Whenever you lift something, you need to make sure you are using the right techniques:
- Place your feet in a stable position and stand as close as possible to what you are lifting, especially if it is a person.
- When lifting a person, stand face to face, bend your knees and place yourself in a squatting position. Keep your back straight to add to your lifting strength.
- If you are turning a person from their back to their side, you need to distribute weight equally and try not to extend forward or bend them too much when repositioning their body.
- Point your feet toward the person being lifted. If you can, put one foot in between the person's feet and one foot to the outside to support yourself.
- When lifting, use smooth, flowing motions and always push upward with your legs.
- Avoid awkward body positions, such as twisting and stooping to help relieve strain on your spine.
To prevent back injuries, caregivers should take advantage of the following:
- Plan ahead when transferring a person
- Use grab bars whenever available
- Pay attention to body posture
Due to the physical demands of their occupation, caregivers need to take these safety tips to heart and determine how they can deliver the best care possible while limiting the risk of injury.
Compensation for Caretaker Injuries
Did you know that caretakers are entitled to workers’ compensation for workplace injuries? At Limonjyan Law Group, we are committed to helping injured caregivers recover the compensation they deserve under the law, and we are prepared to fight for you today.