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Working hard is something we are used to. However, if you don't listen to your body, you might end up injuring yourself. Here's what you should know.
Pushing yourself is one thing, but pushing too hard is completely different. If you put yourself through physical or mental efforts beyond your abilities, you might end up injuring yourself. This is exactly what overexertion is.
Of course, there are many factors that play a role here, such as your age, your medical history, your environment or workplace, and the specific activity you do.
There are many things that can cause overexertion:
When you repeatedly move a joint or muscle over a long period of time, it can lead to overexertion. The repetitive movements can put a strain on your body, leading to pain or discomfort. Activities like typing or writing, playing a musical instrument, sewing, training for a sport, or working on an assembly line are just a few examples of repetitive movements.
You might not be overdoing your activity, but you might be doing it wrong and placing stress on your muscles, bones, joints and connective tissues to the point where you injure yourself. For example, if you lift items incorrectly or you stand up in awkward positions.
A sudden, forceful movement can also cause overexertion. This is more likely to happen if your technique is incorrect. Abrupt movements like twisting, pushing, or bending can lead to overexertion.
What are the signs of overexertion?
Pain is a common sign that you’re overexerting yourself. You may have pain that feels sharp or achy. It may also be more of a burning, tingling, throbbing, or pinching sensation. Whatever pain you feel, stop the activity, and take a rest. If it gets worse, check with your doctor.
Another common symptom is fatigue, which can be physical or mental, depending on what is causing it.
Physical fatigue includes signs as heavy limbs, persistent soreness, poor physical performance, and slow recovery after training.
Mental fatigue is usually recognized because it causes brain fog, difficulty in concentration, increased anxiety, mood changes, and depression.
How can you prevent it?
There are simple yet effective ways in which you can prevent overexertion. Stretch and warm up your muscles before doing any activity. Take breaks every 30 minutes, especially if you stay in the same position for hours!
Learn the proper technique to do your activity and include at least one day of rest per week!