A new study from Finland suggests that young adults with jobs that involve heavy lifting and forceful movements might be at higher risk for back pain later in life. The Finnish Institute of Occupational Health surveyed 738 Finnish men and women in 1986, when they were between 18 and 24 years old, and again 20 years later. The responses indicated whether participants had done heavy, medium or little to no “heavy” physical work as young adults and whether, in middle age, they had localized or radiating low back pain lasting more than seven days during the previous year. Overall, at the second survey, up to 36 percent of men and women reported localized lower back pain, and about 20 percent reported radiating lower back pain. Heavy lifting was associated with radiating pain. Experts commenting on the study for Reuters said that young people tend to “do things their own way” which may involve improper lifting technique and poor posture causing back pain from cumulative damage later.
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