Are hernias preventable? Yes, this common condition can be avoided if one uses the proper lifting techniques.
Hernias are usually caused at work and during recreation, such as weightlifting at the gym. Hernias can be caused by improper lifting techniques.
Proper lifting technique:
#1: Warm up prior to lifting.
#2: Assess the weight of the object that is in front of you.
#3: Look before you lift. There should be a clear path for you to lift your object. You also should know where you are going to put it down.
#4: Make sure you have a tight grip. Gloves may help with this. You should be close to the load you’re going to lift.
#5: Use your arms, legs, and core body (abdominal muscles) to lift—not your back. Bend your knees and lift upwards instead of bending from your waist. This will engage your stronger thigh muscles. Maintain proper posture.
#6: Use slow and steady movements to lift. Once you have your load, carry it straight on, instead of to one side. Quick or twisting movements can pull your muscles.
These proper lifting techniques can help prevent hernias. If you have additional questions, we encourage you to reach out to the Hernia Center of Southern California for more information.