The human body is not a machine, however much employers might like to treat it that way. When someone has to repetitively perform the same job functions for hours a day, multiple days a week, they will put themselves at risk of a repetitive stress injury.
Eventually, even low-level impact on the body from performing the same tasks repeatedly will result in pain, decreased range of motion and decreased functional strength. Workers who develop repetitive stress injuries will likely need medical treatment and will likely also sustain a reduction in their earning potential.
People may need to switch jobs after an injury
Medical treatment and physical therapy can help reduce the symptoms that someone experiences associated with repetitive work tasks. Assistive technology can also help reduce how much strain someone places on their injured body parts. However, if they continue to work in the same position, they will very likely experience continued symptoms that may even get worse and further limit their ability to do their job without significant pain.
Depending on how the injury limits someone’s motions, they may not be able to stay in the same profession. Blue-collar workers, in particular, are at high risk of having a repetitive stress injury force them out of their jobs. Ohio has the 11th-highest number of blue-collar workers in the country, meaning that many households have reason to worry about how repetitive stress could affect their finances.
Workers’ compensation can help
The good news for those coming to the realization that they may have to change the work that they do because of an injury is that workers’ compensation can help. Any medical condition that develops because of someone’s employment could potentially make them eligible for benefits.
Workers’ compensation can cover someone’s care costs while undergoing treatment, and it can also help cover lost wages if they are unable to work or close the gap in their wages if they have to accept a lower-paid job. Too many workers ignore the warning signs of a repetitive stress injury until it gets to a severe point, which may ultimately do more harm than good as their symptoms will likely worsen.
Realizing that there are benefits available through workers’ compensation might inspire those struggling with a repetitive stress injury to get the legal support they need because of their job-related health issues.