- By far, the most common way people were injured during the pandemic was through DIY home improvement/maintenance, exercise, or poor work-from-home set-ups.
- Many people were afraid to risk getting medical attention, therefore delaying much-needed healthcare while their injuries worsened.
- Teens and children have been hit the hardest with complaints of headaches, neck pain and mid-back pain due to online schooling. In addition, their social and developmental skills have been stunted due to social isolation.
February, 2022, New Jersey – While the dust is starting to settle and we are all slowly emerging from the pandemic, doctors are admitting to seeing an increase in overall injuries that have occurred over the span of two years. There has been a rise in common injuries including shoulder, Achilles, knee and back strains.
Exercise-related injuries in people who are just now getting back to the gym after remaining inactive for so long during the pandemic is one reason for the surge. Individuals are simply jumping back into their routine pre-pandemic and hurting themselves by trying to go back and do exactly what they did before the shutdowns. They may be carrying more weight as well, which may also increase their risk of injury.
In addition, people who have been injured or experiencing pain either before or during the pandemic, whether it be back or neck, delayed getting much-needed care for their injuries and are now having to finally deal with the consequences of putting it off. Many patients were afraid to risk getting medical attention due to Covid-19 and are now coming in the office with an injury progression that got worse from inactivity and lack of treatment.
“In my office, we have seen an increase of injuries and discomfort stemming from the lumbar and cervical spine discs. In addition, cervical headaches/migraines have been overwhelmingly on the rise, as well as pinched nerves in the neck and lower back. Whether it be from a delay in treatment of an existing injury, or the result of awkwardly clacking away on your laptop at your kitchen counter or in bed, we have witnessed a surge in problems that have been a really big issue for a lot of my patients,” states Dr. Michael J. Lagana, chiropractor at Backsmart Wellness Center.
People hunkered down at home and as a result, doctors are now seeing a rise in strains, sprains and pinched nerves from home renovation projects that involve climbing ladders and painting walls, as well as poor work set-ups and exercise routines. Hunching over our computers in bed, the kitchen table, coffee tables and even the floor have caused lots of issues as well. Doctors are seeing more neck strains (think “text neck”), rotator cuff injuries and lower back pain.
Teens and children have been hit the hardest with complaints of headaches, neck pain and mid-back pain due to the physical consequences of online schooling. The full picture is now beginning to emerge, and we are now witnessing the trauma and anxiety it has caused our children. In addition, their physical health needs were put before their mental needs, causing delays in their social and developmental skills due to extreme isolation.
“The pandemic created a paradigm shift in our education system for many reasons. In younger kids, their social skills and their developmental milestones have been stunted due to the social isolation they faced for many months. In the clinic, we have seen a rise of school-age children with complaints of headaches, neck pain, and mid-back pain. When obtaining the social history of these patients, a common trend of decreased movement, increased blue light from computer and phone use, and a poor ergonomics setting seemed to play a large role in their acute symptoms,” states Brittany Lavin, physical therapist at Backsmart Wellness Center.