It is National Back Care Awareness Week from 7th to 11th Oct 2013.
Every year, the organisation Back Care, promotes an awareness week to highlight its work and promote the need for healthy backs. This year’s theme is ‘Caring for Carers.’
Unpaid carers make a massive contribution to healthcare provision in the UK, saving the NHS and social service providers over £100 billon by looking after disabled, sick or elderly relatives, partners and friends. They provide a wide range of support to those they care for including personal care, such as dressing and bathing, providing transport, running errands such as shopping and administering medication or medical care.
– There are approximately 6.5m unpaid carers in the UK, this equates to 1 in 8 adults.
– 1.4m carers take care of a friend, relative or partner for more than 50 hours per week.
– 38% of carers provide physical help, such as helping people get in and out of bed or up and down stairs (of those providing more than 20 hours of care this rises to 54%).
– In a survey for Carers’ Week 2012 83% of carers reported that caring had affected their physical health, this includes injuries as a result of manual handling.
– Very few carers have a GP that provides regular carers health checks or did home or telephone appointments.
– Many carers find it difficult to find the time to look after their own needs, putting off their own treatment or discharging themselves early from hospital because their caring responsibilities can’t be covered.
Many carers help the person they care for with physical tasks, such as getting in and out of the bed, bath or chairs. Without advice and training in safe technique, the carer may be putting undue ‘biomechanical’ stress on their own bodies.
In addition to this, the role of carer, especially when caring for a spouse or close family member, can create unique emotional stresses. Both parties can struggle with issues such as dependency and loss, as they try to adapt to the changing relationship.
Over 70% the UK’s unpaid carers now suffer from back pain, and are a greater risk of developing chronic pain, which is highly disabling in a third of cases and life-long for the majority.
Cheadle Osteopathy is supporting local carers by offering them £10.00 off their Initial Consultation during the month of October 2013.*
Call 0161 478 1877 now to make an appointment.
Advice for Carers
Some useful tips for Carers from Osteopath Kelston Chorley, a British Osteopathic Association (BOA) member.
~Think before you help someone – don’t risk a disc by lifting or manoeuvring someone on your own if they are too big for you.
~ Never twist and bend your back when lifting an object or helping to support someone.
~ When lifting keep the person or object close to you and always bend from the hips and knees.
~ Avoid straining yourself when providing aid for someone, always ensure you are in a safe and good position to help that person – look after yourself first so you can look after them.
~ If you are looking after someone on a regular basis and this requires lifting or handling, try to find some changes you could make which reduce the physical stress.
~ Pace yourself with your activity, its usually when we rush things that we tend to hurt ourselves.
~ Take regular exercise yourself so you are fit and able to help others.
* Single use, not to be used in conjunction with any other offer. Offer expires 1st November 2013.
National Back Care Awareness Week