International Journal of Occupational Safety and Health <p>International Journal of Occupational Safety and Health (IJOSH) is an international peer-reviewed, open-access journal covering occupational health and safety-related disciplines (occupational health, safety, and workers' health including homemakers and students). IJOSH is published quarterly. It provides occupational health physicians, doctors, nurses, engineers, ergonomists, and a wide range of occupational hygiene, health, and safety professionals with a dependable single source of proficiently written legal, practical, and management occupational health information. This journal provides immediate open access to its content on the principle that making research freely available to the public supports a greater global exchange of knowledge. </p> <p>IJOSH is the official journal of the Occupational Health and Safety Society of Nepal.</p> Occupational Health and Safety Society of Nepal en-US International Journal of Occupational Safety and Health 2738-9707 Impacts of Mercury Exposure on Human Health, Safety and Environment: Literature Review and Bibliometric Analysis (1995 to 2021) <p><strong>Introduction: </strong>Mercury is a highly toxic and persistent contaminant found in food and parts of the environment. Over the years, global research on mercury poison has soared owing to concerns about its effects on human health, occupational safety, and environmental sustainability. Although numerous studies have identified and examined the various types, sources, toxicity, exposure, and impacts of mercury, comprehensive studies on the research landscape and scientific developments on the subject areas are currently lacking. Therefore, this paper shows a bibliometric analysis (BA) and literature review (LR) of the top publications, funders, organisations, and countries working on Mercury research worldwide.</p> <p><strong>Methods</strong>: The research landscape on the subject area was examined by BA from 1995 to 2021, whereas the scientific developments were highlighted through LR.</p> <p><strong>Results</strong>: Results showed that mercury research has gained global prominence since the discovery of the Minamata disease in 1956. The most prolific mercury researchers, institutions, and funders are from the United States, Japan, Brazil, Canada, and China, whereas the publications on Mercury research doubled over the period. The top source titles for publications on Mercury are Neurotoxicology, Science of the Total Environment, and Environmental Health Perspectives. However, Micheal Aschner (US) and Takashi Yorifuji (Japan) are the most prolific researchers. Co-occurrence analysis revealed that mercury, methyl mercury, fish, toxicity, and Minamata disease are the most cited keywords, which shows the correlation nexus between fish consumption and mercury poisoning.</p> <p><strong>Conclusion</strong>: The LR showed that mercury research is widely investigated due to global concerns about its impact on human health, safety, and the environment.</p> Suvarna Raju Palathoti Victor O. Otitolaiye Riyad Mahfud Manar Al Rawahi Copyright (c) 2022 Suvarna Raju Palathoti, Victor O. Otitolaiye, Riyad Mahfud, Manar Al Rawahi 2022-09-30 2022-09-30 12 4 336 352 10.3126/ijosh.v12i4.43125 Binge eating and sitting behavior as a risk cluster in obesity among software employees <p><strong>Introduction: </strong>Binge eating disorder (BED) was underdiagnosed, underestimated eating disorder known to be responsible for obesity in both children and adults. Sedentary behavior estimated by measuring the sitting time was one of the major contributing factors in the development of metabolic syndrome in adults. People working in Information Technology (IT) sector possess both of these determinants in a significant capacity and thereby might be at risk for obesity, which in turn can be responsible for various cardio-metabolic events in their life.</p> <p><strong>Methods: </strong>A cross-sectional study was conducted on 513 working adults belonging to the IT sector, using a face-to-face interview with a pre-tested questionnaire along with anthropometric measurements to measure BMI for obesity. Binge-eating disorder screener-7 for adults was adopted to assess the disorder, and the Marshall Sitting Questionnaire was used to evaluate their sitting behavior.</p> <p><strong>Results: </strong>The study found that the prevalence of BED (23%) was higher in unmarried individuals, and moderate BED is significantly associated with higher BMI among them. Conversely, sitting time (Mean=8.83 hours/day) was seen mostly in married adults, and is also associated with higher BMI. As a risk cluster, both BED and sitting time combined had higher odds of resulting in Obesity than existing separately.</p> <p><strong>Conclusion: </strong>Several lifestyle factors such as binge-watching TV, late working hours, higher salaries, etc., have contributed to developing Binge eating disorder and higher sitting time, which pose a significant risk for metabolic disorders like obesity.</p> Vishnu Vardhan Yenuganti Rajesh Kannan Sivakumar Srinivas Rao Darmisetty Sasikumar P J Copyright (c) 2022 Vishnu Vardhan Yenuganti, Rajesh Kannan Sivakumar, Srinivas Rao Darmisetty, Sasikumar P J 2022-09-30 2022-09-30 12 4 269 275 10.3126/ijosh.v12i4.41140 Correlation between the Guyon Canal Syndrome and the Forward Head Posture in Prolonged Smartphone Users <p><strong>Introduction:</strong> From youth to the eldest, smartphones have become an essential gadget of life. Neutral head posture plays an important role in our day-to-day activities as it is responsible for stability. Although smartphones have made our lives easier, they tend to increase the number of complaints related to the cervical spine, hand complex, wrist, and elbow pain as a result of their excessive use. This might result in various faulty postural adaptations, which can greatly contribute to the increased risk of musculoskeletal disorders. Also, its prolonged use can lead to forwarding head posture (FHP), which can be accompanied by Guyon Canal Syndrome (GCS). This study aimed to find and determine the correlation between Guyon canal syndrome and forward head posture in prolonged smartphone users.</p> <p><strong>Methods:</strong> This was a cross-sectional study that consisted of 80 college subjects who were selected based on the criterion for selection. The data that was collected included, demographic details, smartphone usage characteristics, the severity of pain, presence of FHP, and mechanosensitivity of the ulnar nerve. Statistical analysis was done using a non-parametric test. Spearman’s correlation coefficient test was used.</p> <p><strong>Results:</strong> The results of this study among the 80 prolonged smartphone users showed that 42 users (52.5%) were in the age group of 18–21, and 38 users (47.5%) were found to be in the age group of 22–25. Most of them were right-handed i.e., 61 (76%), while 19 (24%) were left-handed. In BMI, normal-weighing subjects (18.5-24.9) were 48 (60%) and overweight subjects were 32 (40%). Mean <u>+</u> SD of Smartphone Addiction Scale, Visual Analogue Scale, Upper Limb Tension Test and Occiput to Wall Distance was 29.99 <u>+</u> 6.50, 1.48 <u>+</u> 0.86, 0.73 <u>+</u> 0.45, and 2.78 <u>+</u> 0.96, respectively. Spearman’s correlation coefficient was shown to have a moderately positive correlation between both SAS and VAS (r = 0.36, p = 0.0010), SAS and ULTT (r = 0.14, p = 0.022), and SAS and OWD (r = 0.17, p = 0.013). Linear regression was used to check the correlation and significance between FHP and GCS, where the r value was (0.27) and the p-value was 0.0177, which was found to be statistically significant.</p> <p><strong>Conclusion:</strong> Based on the findings of this study, we found that there was a positive correlation between forwarding head posture and Guyon canal syndrome in prolonged smartphone users. FHP can give rise to moderate pressure on the ulnar nerve, which mainly supplies the fifth finger of the hand, causing Guyon Canal Syndrome. Hence, we can conclude that in subjects with prolonged usage of smartphones, FHP can further progress and these subjects may have the tendency to develop GCS.</p> Sandeep Shinde Akhilesh Vaidya Prachiti Rajan Bhore Copyright (c) 2022 Sandeep Shinde, Akhilesh Vaidya, Prachiti Rajan Bhore 2022-09-30 2022-09-30 12 4 276 283 10.3126/ijosh.v12i4.42537 Prevalence and factors associated with lung function abnormalities among rice millworkers in Sokoto state, Northwest Nigeria <p><strong>Introduction: </strong>Northwest Nigeria has witnessed an increase in rice milling activities due to the ban on rice importation. The majority of workers in the industry, as it is in many informal sectors workers are disproportionately affected by hazards in the workplace due to poor usage of protective devices. Inhalation of dust over a long period results in lung function abnormalities. The study assessed the prevalence and factors associated with lung function abnormalities among rice mill workers in Sokoto state, Northwest Nigeria.</p> <p><strong>Methods: </strong>The study was conducted using a cross-sectional design. Data were collected between June 2019 and July 2019 using an interviewer-administered questionnaire and a lung function examination was conducted using a calibrated Contec SP10 digital spirometer following standardized procedures. Data were analyzed using IBM SPSS version 23 and presented in tables and charts.</p> <p><strong>Results: </strong>About a third of 119 (30.2%) of the respondents had abnormalities on spirometry, and there was a statistically significant reduction in the mean FVC (3.63 ± 0.39) and FEV<sub>1 </sub>(3.01 ± 0.36). Being at least 30 years of age (aOR=3.3), working more than 8 hours a day (aOR=2.4), and having at least a symptom of respiratory morbidity (aOR=10.1) were the factors found to be significantly associated with lung function abnormalities.</p> <p><strong>Conclusion: </strong>This study showed that the prevalence of lung function abnormality among rice mill workers in Sokoto state is relatively high and age, number of hours worked per day and having at least a symptom of respiratory morbidity were the factors associated with lung function abnormalities.</p> Ayotunde Sherif Azees Mansur Oche Abdulfattah Isa Abiola Temitayo-Oboh Jessica Ango Abdullahi Shehu Nurudeen Adana Copyright (c) 2022 Ayotunde Sherif Azees, Mansur Oche, Abdulfattah Isa, Abiola Temitayo-Oboh, Jessica Ango, Abdullahi Shehu, Nurudeen Adana 2022-09-30 2022-09-30 12 4 284 292 10.3126/ijosh.v12i4.42977 Anthropometric study of hand parameters for redesigning surgical instruments to combat ergonomic challenges in an operation theatre <p><strong>Introduction</strong>: Anthropometric hand dimensions are used in the design of hand instruments for improving the efficiency and human comfort of surgical equipment and instruments. Instruments built for large male hands make it more difficult for petite female hands to operate them, which reduces their productivity and increases the risk of musculoskeletal diseases. So, the present study was undertaken to evaluate the differences in anthropometric and biomechanical parameters between the dominant hands of adult Indian males and females.</p> <p><strong>Methods</strong>: The study was conducted on 335 Indian health care professionals of which 168 were males and 167 were females. Various anthropometric and biomechanical parameters were measured on the dominant hand of all the individuals included in the study. Length, breadth and span of a hand, as well as wrist circumference, were measured by measuring tape while handgrip strength and pinch strength was recorded by Jamar dynamometer &amp; Jamar pinch gauge respectively. Obtained data were analyzed by applying the t-test SPSS version 27. We considered P-value &lt;0.05 as statistically significant.</p> <p><strong>Results: </strong>A higher statistically significant difference (&lt;0.05) was found in hand anthropometric and biomechanical parameters amongst dominant hands of Indian male and female health care professionals.</p> <p><strong>Conclusion: </strong>The present study was gender-based. All the anthropometric and biomechanical parameters were found to be of dimensions in males as compared to females. This study provides baseline anthropometric &amp; biomechanical values of the Indian hand that will help manufacturers to redesign instruments to improve efficiency and prevent the risk of musculoskeletal disorders amongst health care professionals.</p> Shikha Singh Dilshad Usmani Sanjeev Kumar Jain Saurabh Chaudhary Hina Nafees Copyright (c) 2022 Shikha Singh, Dilshad Usmani, Sanjeev Kumar Jain, Saurabh Chaudhary, Hina Nafees 2022-09-30 2022-09-30 12 4 293 298 10.3126/ijosh.v12i4.43756 Assessment of oral health status and tobacco-related habits among the employees of North-West Karnataka Road Transport Corporation (NWKRTC), Belagavi City - A Cross-Sectional Study <p><strong>Introduction: </strong>Transport workers have a very haphazard and incongruent schedule which makes it difficult for them to follow proper oral hygiene practices. The prevalence of tobacco habits is also found to be high due to their long periods of work and constant stress. This study aimed to assess the oral health status and tobacco habits of the government bus drivers and conductors of NWKRTC, Belagavi City, Karnataka. </p> <p><strong>Methods:</strong> A descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted on 451 Government Bus drivers and other employees of NWKRTC who gave consent for the study. WHO Oral Health Assessment Form 2013 was used to record the oral health status and a self-designed, validated questionnaire was employed for recording the oral hygiene practices and tobacco-related habits. Descriptive statistics and Chi-Square was used for statistical analysis. </p> <p><strong>Results: </strong>The mean age of the employees of NWKRTC is 43.55 years and there are 414 males as compared to only 37 females. The mean DMFT score was 5.55±3.08. 228 of them had some kind of tobacco habit with guthka (25.9 percent) being the most prevalent one. 57 employees had manifestations of leukoplakia and OSMF. There was an association between tobacco habits and oral mucosal lesions as well as the DMFT score.</p> <p><strong>Conclusion: </strong>The Oral Health Status of the Government employees of NWKRTC is poor. It is further compounded by the high prevalence of tobacco habits and associated lesions and it is a problem that needs to be addressed immediately.</p> Abhra Roy Choudhury Anil V. Ankola Roopali M. Sankeshwari Mahantesh Siddibhavi Deepika Vallakunja Atrey Pai Khot Apurva Deshpande Copyright (c) 2022 Abhra Roy Choudhury, Anil V. Ankola, Roopali M. Sankeshwari, Mahantesh Siddibhavi, Deepika Vallakunja, Atrey Pai Khot, Apurva Deshpande 2022-09-30 2022-09-30 12 4 299 306 10.3126/ijosh.v12i4.43885 Scientific Model Development for Machinery Safety using Machine Reliability, Integrity and Availability <p><strong>Introduction:</strong> Machines are equipment that increases productivity and efficiency in a workplace. Machine Reliability, Integrity, and Availability are the most critical factors to ensure machinery safety in a workplace.</p> <p><strong>Methods:</strong> Throughout this study, a series of reviews of previous literature are described in relation to the elements of reliability, integrity and availability. This study examines the methods used to investigate levels of each element as well as the results of performing the analysis. Each review is chosen from the aspect of the safety feature that can be interpreted from the research study. A scientific model that utilizes an improved Bottom-up Approach is proposed to further improve the worker's safety and enhance the productivity of an industry.</p> <p><strong>Results:</strong> Research shows that the chosen reviews have positive and negative change towards the level of machinery safety and a more substantial approach is needed to further strengthen the issue. The proposed model combines the effort of employee and various management organization as a team. The model is validated using Bias- Variance Trade off method that analyses the proposed model in a 27MW power plant with a selection of employee and management.</p> <p><strong>Conclusion:</strong> Model validation proves that the proposed model is an effective method to increase the machinery reliability, integrity and availability in a workplace. The scientific methodology provided will help management as a team to avert mechanical accidents from occurring at an initial stage.</p> Kartikeyan Patma Nesan Azizul Buang Sivabalan Kaniapan Dzulkarnain Zaini Copyright (c) 2022 Kartikeyan Patma Nesan, Azizul Buang, Sivabalan Kaniapan, Dzulkarnain Zaini 2022-09-30 2022-09-30 12 4 307 315 10.3126/ijosh.v12i4.42147 Factors affecting post-traumatic growth in South Korean police officers by age group <p><strong>Introduction:</strong> Police officers are exposed to a variety of traumatic events, which can be physical or psychological. This study aimed to identify factors that influence Post-traumatic growth (PTG) in South Korean police officers, according to age group.</p> <p><strong>Methods:</strong> Raw data were collected from September 26 to October 9, 2017, for 269 police officers who are employed at 10 police offices in Seoul. PTG was affected significantly by age, marital status, monthly income, and police rank in pain perception and social support variables among general characteristics.</p> <p><strong>Results:</strong> Factors that affected PTG in the ‘20~29’ age group were resilience and pain perception, but in the ‘30~39’ age group, only Pain perception was significant, and in the ‘over 50’ age group, social support and pain perception were significant.</p> <p><strong>Conclusions:</strong> The development of mental health programs for police should consider the age group of the patients. Mental health care should also be continuous.</p> E Lee Seungwoo Han Copyright (c) 2022 E Lee, Seungwoo Han 2022-09-30 2022-09-30 12 4 316 324 10.3126/ijosh.v12i4.42574 Stress and Depression in the Workplace of Educators in the Philippines <p><strong>Introduction:</strong> Workplace stress and depression should be properly treated to maintain productivity in teaching. Unmanaged stress and depression could lead to severe outcomes that affect the environment in the classroom. Thus, managing stress and preventing depression in the workplace are significant aspects of successful teaching.</p> <p><strong>Methods:</strong> This study aims to determine the level of workplace stress and depression of the educators in the Philippines by gathering their demographic profiles, levels of workplace stress, and the level of depression. A correlation was used if there is a significant difference in the profile between workplace stress and a state of depression. This research study used the descriptive survey method with educators as respondents in the questionnaire during the school year 2019-2020 with a total of 407 respondents.</p> <p><strong>Results:</strong> Based on the study results, teachers disagree that they experience stress in the workplace, and teachers seldom experience depression. The difference shows that the level of stress and depression are lower at vocational and college levels.</p> <p><strong>Conclusion:</strong> Based on the findings, teachers should understand how to practice stress management and prevent depression. School administrators and policymakers should look at possible interventions to minimize the level of stress and depression of educators.</p> Caren Orlanda-Ventayen Randy Joy Ventayen Copyright (c) 2022 Caren Orlanda-Ventayen, Randy Joy Ventayen 2022-09-30 2022-09-30 12 4 325 335 10.3126/ijosh.v12i4.43226 Particles and fragments in unused disposable face masks: A microscopic analysis <p><strong>Introduction: </strong>In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, many governments mandated the wearing of face masks by law. New research shows that these masks contain and release microplastics.</p> <p><strong>Methods: </strong>In the present work, five samples of surgical masks were examined microscopically for the presence of particles and fragments. The masks were purchased from two of the largest supermarket chains in Switzerland.</p> <p><strong>Results: </strong>Particles and fragments were found on the fiber surfaces in the inner layer of all face masks examined. The size of these objects varied in the range of about 2-40 µm, with dark spots and particles on the fibers having a smaller diameter than the more transparent fragments.</p> <p><strong>Conclusions: </strong>In this work, it was shown that particles and fragments in the micrometer range can be found on the inside of commercially available surgical face masks purchased in supermarkets in Switzerland. The health significance of the presence of particles and fragments in the micrometer range as demonstrated by the current investigation of surgical face masks needs to be further investigated.</p> Felix Scholkmann Copyright (c) 2022 Felix Scholkmann 2022-09-30 2022-09-30 12 4 257 263 10.3126/ijosh.v12i4.44903 Post-Covid Workplace Scenario – Employer and Employee Health and Safety <p>The decreasing trend in the spread of the covid-19 infection has relaxed the restrictions imposed on the community, especially the working people. This working community, whether or not infected by the virus is now slowly turning back to work, along with the impacts of the lockdown. Though there is a decrease in the infection rate, there is always the possibility of infection at the workplace, as some percentage of the vaccinated people are also getting infected. It is absolutely necessary to follow the covid precautionary measures. Hence, it cannot be said that the normal situation has returned. The employer is in a state to manage a crowd comprising post-covid patients, caretakers of covid patients and non-affected groups. The literature works reporting on post covid scenario, precautionary measures to be taken and workplace, benefits of workplace social distancing and sanitation, and medical care needed for workers were reviewed. This paper discusses the post-pandemic workplace scenario, health and safety, sanitation among workers, awareness of precautionary measures and their behavioral changes.</p> Palanisamy Sivaprakash A.V.R. Akshaya Copyright (c) 2022 Palanisamy Sivaprakash, A.V.R. Akshaya 2022-09-30 2022-09-30 12 4 264 268 10.3126/ijosh.v12i4.42225