Musculoskeletal Disorders and Dental Work 

Researchers have found symptoms of discomfort for dental workers occurred in the wrists/hands (69.5%), neck (68.5%), upper back (67.4%), low back (56.8%) and shoulders (60.0%). They also found that 93% of those surveyed stated that they had at least one job-related ache, pain, or discomfort in the 12 months prior to the survey.

With respect to dental hygienists, Atwood and Michalak reported that the prevalence of musculoskeletal pain ranged from 63 to 93%, with the low back, neck, shoulder, and hand being the most frequent sites. According to an evaluation from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, dental hygienists ranked first above all occupations in the proportion of cases of carpal tunnel syndrome per 1,000 employees. Conditions can vary from mild recurrent symptoms to severe and incapacitating. Early symptoms of MSDs include pain, swelling, tenderness, numbness, tingling sensation, and loss of strength.

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