Overexertion and repetitive stress injuries are one of the most common causes of on-the-job injuries, according to the Ohio State University and the Bureau of Labor Statistics. When you strain your body by working too hard, especially if your job involves repetitive motions, you’re at risk for developing a musculoskeletal disorder. This can lead to “swelling, numbness, stiffness, chronic pain, or the permanent loss of mobility in muscles, tendons, ligaments, and joints.”
Understanding overexertion injuries and how they happen
Overexertion injuries can either develop after years of repetitive motions or with one single movement. They commonly affect soft tissues like ligaments, tendons and muscles, the back and spinal cord or forearms and wrists.
Certain industries have higher rates of overexertion injuries, including manufacturing, transportation, warehousing, construction, retail and jobs in office settings. The injuries may occur when an employee’s job involves significant repeated motions, such as typing on a keyboard or performing a single task on a manufacturing line. However, overexertion can also occur when someone lifts heavy objects, uses excessive force, moves unnaturally or stands for long periods of time.
How to prevent overexertion injuries
While it’s not always possible to switch jobs or industries, taking preventative measures can help you avoid overexertion injuries. For example:
- When possible, use assistive devices like dollies and carts to carry large or heavy objects
- Make multiple trips or ask a colleague for assistance, rather than adding to your load
- Use proper lifting techniques—bend at your knees, not your back
- Rearrange your workstation to avoid twisting, bending and reaching
- Use a foot rest and adjust the height of your computer monitor for ergonomic comfort
- Take frequent short stretching breaks from strenuous tasks and static positions, about once every 20-30 minutes
- Engage in regular exercise, strength training and stretching to build your core strength
If you notice any pain, numbness, tingling, swelling, tenderness, clicking or loss of strength, visit an approved medical provider right away. Addressing pain and injury earlier lessens the likelihood that you’ll develop a chronic injury.
However, if your job has caused an overexertion or repetitive stress injury, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. Since it can be difficult to prove that these types of injuries originated on the job, it’s important to call the Law Offices of Tim Misny as soon as possible. We can evaluate your on-the-job injury claim and explain your legal options.
Call an Ohio workers’ compensation lawyer today
Were you injured on the job? I’ll Make Them Pay!® Get in touch with me at (877) 614-9524 so that I can evaluate your case as soon as possible.