Now that spring is officially here, you may be thinking of spring cleaning, both indoors and out. But before you rush into activity, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons suggests you take certain precautions: Statistics show that thousands of people injure themselves during their annual clean, whether it be using a stepladder, a lawn mower or a rake or lifting heavy furniture and other objects. “When the ‘to do list’ is long, people often rush through chores and don’t take the time to get out the correct equipment, to take breaks and rest muscles, or to read directions and plan out their tasks. Many overuse injuries, including tendonitis, sprains, strains or breaks, can be prevented if proper ergonomic technique is observed and overuse of one or a few muscle groups is avoided,” said Fraser J. Leversedge, MD, spokesperson for the AAOS and assistant professor in the Department of Surgery/Division of Orthopaedic Surgery at Duke University. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in 2008, more than 38,000 people injured themselves using a stepladder and more than 40,000 Americans injured themselves gardening. So, when it’s time to clean up the house, yard or garage, the AAOS recommends that you keep the following safety tips in mind:
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