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Why addressing recurring pain at work protects you
You’ve been doing the same job for years, but it has become more painful in recent months. You can barely wait for the end of your shift each day because of the pain in your arms, shoulders, knees, hips or back.
Chronic pain that flares up at work is likely the result of repetitive job functions. Whether you stand and lift all day, grip things or twist to move items from one place to another, continuing to perform those motions repeatedly will eventually lead to injury. Many workers with chronic pain simply try to ignore their symptoms and keep doing their jobs.
However, reporting your symptoms and seeking workers’ compensation benefits can protect you in two very important ways.
It can prevent the progression of your condition
If the pain you experience has a direct connection to the job function that you perform, your symptoms are only going to continue getting worse if you continue to perform the same job you always have.
When you see a doctor to secure a diagnosis, you can also ask for a doctor’s note asking your employer to modify your job functions or ordering rest and treatment. Workers’ compensation claims can potentially protect you from the condition continuing to worsen until your symptoms affect you all day, every single day.
It can help you avoid losing your job
If you have been with the company for years and your productivity starts to drop because of chronic pain, your employer may start to take issue with your job performance. You could start receiving write-ups or poor performance reviews that could culminate in the loss of your job.
When you file a workers’ compensation claim and have a diagnosis that requires accommodations, your employer will have to work with you instead of punishing you for your declining performance related to your medical condition.
Once you understand what’s potentially at risk if you fail to stand up for yourself, you may have the inspiration you need to inform your employer of your condition, seek medical care and pursue a workers’ compensation claim. Getting workers’ compensation benefits can help you recover from your chronic pain condition and pay your bills until you are able to return to work.