Whether you work in an office or in construction, chances are your job involves some repetitive movements and actions that you perform every day. While these small motions may seem harmless at first, they can cause chronic injuries in the long term. It is likely that you will not notice you are injured until it results in severe discomfort or pain.
There are countless types of scenarios that can result in repetitive stress injuries (RSIs). One of the more common injuries is carpal tunnel syndrome, which is typically caused by frequent typing. Other examples are repetitive stress injuries caused by frequently lifting patients on and off gurneys, moving luggage, or carrying heavy boxes and equipment.
If your job responsibilities caused you to develop an overuse injury, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. Contact Shulman & Hill for a free case review to learn more.
Small Injuries Can Turn Into Big Problems
For many people, the narrative is similar: They start a job and after a few weeks, they begin to notice aches and pains they did not experience before. Over time, these small pains can get worse and lead to more severe problems.
Repetitive stress injuries include more than 100 different types of injuries that are caused by frequently repeating the same motion. If you are currently suffering from a repetitive stress injury, you may be eligible to receive workers’ compensation benefits for your damages.
What Are Repetitive Stress Injuries?
A large number of jobs require workers to perform similar motions day in and day out. These repetitive motions can eventually create smaller, less noticeable injuries. But over time, minor aches and pains and develop into chronic and debilitating injuries.
People who work in sanitation, home health, hospitals, offices, factories, manufacturing facilities, housekeeping, and many other professions may be at increased risk for developing an overuse injury.
Common Repetitive Stress Injuries Experienced by Brooklyn Workers
There are many types of repetitive stress injuries with varying levels of severity. The pain and discomfort level can be different from person to person. Some of these problems and conditions include:
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Most common in jobs that require employees to use a joystick or computers, carpal tunnel is characterized by numbness, aches, tingling, and weakness in the fingers or hands. Carpal tunnel is caused by nerve damage in the wrist.
- Bursitis. A bursa is a fluid-filled sac that cushions a joint. Injuries can be caused by carrying heavy items, reaching overhead, and overusing joints.
- Tearing and Irritation of the Tendons. This occurs when your tendons are sore, torn, and irritated. Tearing and irritation can be due to overuse or overstretching of your muscles.
- Stress Fractures. Walking, lifting, and other rhythmic actions over time can lead to minute bone cracks. Stress fractures are more likely in occupations that require heavy lifting.
- Patellofemoral Syndrome. This occurs when the cartilage of the kneecap weakens after repetitive climbing or kneeling. Postal and other delivery workers may be at increased risk for developing patellofemoral syndrome.
- Epicondylitis. What is commonly referred to as tennis elbow, epicondylitis is not always the result of playing tennis. It is caused by any type of overuse and strain on the elbow joint and often results in pain and swelling of the elbows.
Diagnosing a Repetitive Stress Injury (RSI)
One of the challenges with diagnosing an RSI is that the symptoms build over time and can be barely noticeable initially. Many people write off their symptoms as other issues, or just simply being sore and tired. It is important that you take early warning signs seriously. Symptoms can slowly progress, leaving you from fully functional one day to unable to work a few weeks later.
You may be suffering from an RSI if you notice any of the following symptoms:
- Tingling or numbness
- Pain and tenderness
- Noticeable decrease in energy and endurance
- Changes in your posture or gait
- Switching from your dominant hand to your non-dominant hand to avoid pain
Who is at Risk of Developing a Repetitive Stress Injury?
Common risk factors for repetitive stress injuries include poor posture, improper technique, and overuse of the muscle or joint. While these risk factors certainly exist in most jobs, there are some additional variables that can determine if the worker is more susceptible or at an elevated risk for injuries.
Workers may find that they are more likely to experience symptoms of a repetitive stress injury if they work in a physically taxing job or use a computer for several hours each day.
Steps You Can Take After an Injury
If you have noticed symptoms of a repetitive stress injury and suspect it was caused by doing the same set of tasks and motions repeatedly at work, you might be eligible to file a workers’ compensation claim. If you feel you meet the requirements for filing a claim, you should reach out to an experienced and qualified workers’ compensation law firm like Shulman & Hill.
Filing a workers’ compensation claim can be complex and frustrating for those who are unfamiliar with the process, but by working with an experienced attorney, you will have access to a wealth of legal knowledge and support during each step of the claims process. They can help you pursue compensation for any medical expenses and lost wages related to your injury.
Why Choose Shulman & Hill?
When you are filing a workers’ compensation claim, the insurer will possibly try to minimize or completely deny your claim. That is why hiring an experienced workers’ compensation attorney can be so beneficial. A lawyer from Shulman & Hill can negotiate on your behalf and help ensure you receive all of the benefits you may be entitled to.
Contact us today for a free, no-obligation legal consultation to learn more.