Yoga Aids Treatment and Prevention of Musculoskeletal Disorders/Pain
Musculoskeletal disorders (MSD) are linked to jobs/careers that require repetitive motions. Dentistry is just one example of a job/career that requires many repetitive motions and awkward postures daily which affect the neck, shoulders, back, elbows, wrists, and fingers. As a dental hygienist, I suffered from neck and shoulder pain as well as carpel tunnel. After going to several physical therapy sessions I discovered that many of the exercises they wanted me to do were also done in yoga as well as deep breathing. I began my yoga journey and discovered it was a great way to become more relaxed and reverse my body’s musculoskeletal imbalance to one of balance.
Yoga is the union of the body, the mind and breath. Yoga helps to strengthen muscles, increase flexibility as well as balance both body and mind. Studies show yoga can help lessen chronic pain due to MSD, increase brain cells, and decrease tension/stress effects. A systematic review of the literature on the benefits of yoga for MSD and the chronic pain that accompanies them showed that yoga is likely to be equal to or superior to other pain reducing exercises and pain medications.
All workers should consider how they can prevent MSD/Pain from occurring or worsening so their careers are not shortened. Studies have shown that a consistent yoga practice of two sessions a week can have a significant reduction in MSD/pain for the yoga student. Improving ergonomics at work as well as physical activity such as yoga which focuses on mindfulness, proper alignment in each pose and breath work are shown to help treat and prevent MSD/pain. Yoga is a great way to achieve balance in mind and body so come join our yoga community at Blue Yoga.
-Kim Stabbe, RDH,MS, RYT
1) D. Garlough, “Yoga is a Lifestyle You Can Take to Work”, RDHMAG.com, May 2017
2) NIH National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, “Iyengar Yoga for Chronic Low-Back Pain Shows Promising Results”, Published 9/1/2009, modified 2/2/15
3) R. McCaffrey, J. Park, “The Benefits of Yoga for Musculoskeletal Disorders: A Systematic Review of the Literature”, J Yoga Phys Ter, Vol. 2(5), 2012
4) A. Chismark, “Prevent Pain With Yoga”, Dimensions of Dental Hygiene, Vol. 13(11), Nov. 2015