The Risk of Returning to Work After a Back Injury
Serious injuries can be life-changing, keep you out of work, and create difficulties when you return to work. This is especially true for physically demanding work, such as construction, emergency services, and other trades. While you preferably wouldn’t go back to work until fully recovered, you still need to be aware of some limitations.
If the injury occurred at work, it’s important to understand what factors led to the injury and what you can do to avoid the same situation. It’s also important to focus on improving the stability and flexibility in your ankles, hips, and upper back. These two steps can be the key to successfully returning to work and preventing further injury.
Tips for avoiding back injuries
Heavy lifting is a common requirement for physically demanding careers. You should be wary of how far you have to bend. Never lift from floor height, as this puts the most strain on your back. Instead, use the appropriate tools to bring the object to an easier height.
When lifting is required, minimize the angle of your back in relation to your waist. This is known as your trunk flexion and it is dangerous. As the old saying goes, “don’t lift with your back.” Instead, keep your head and sternum upright at all times. Use your legs and hips to lift - known as hip flexion - which provides more stability.
In addition, stay fit for duty so that you maintain strength and endurance. If you can, do this before suffering a back injury and you may be able to avoid one in the first place. Adding full body lifts into your routine, such as squats, deadlifts, and lunges, will help you avoid injuries at work. In addition, these exercises will help posture and overall health.
Lastly, reduce the amount of friction you go up against. When you lift or push something, increased friction requires more force to overcome. This increases the strain on your back and increases the chances of sustaining a further injury. Use the proper equipment, such as a dolly or cart, to get from point A to Point B.
Injured workers have rights
Workers in New York make the city work. That's why an on-the-job injury can be so devastating. In an instant, you may be unable to support your family or meet your responsibilities. If you’ve gone through that ordeal once, you know how important it is to use caution.
Unfortunately, the future is unpredictable and work may aggravate your injury. Regardless of the circumstances, you have rights that deserve to be upheld. Contact our office today and find out how we can help you.