Wear and tear injuries, also known as
repetitive stress injuries, develop over time and often grow worse if not treated. They are long-lasting,
and cause pain, immobility, and a decreased quality of life. If your work
environment has caused your wear and tear injuries, you may be able to
file a claim to pursue workers’ compensation. Our firm has guided
hundreds of clients through the California workers’ comp system,
and will discuss your options for receiving benefits.
The 5 most common wear and tear injuries are:
Carpal tunnel syndrome. The carpal tunnel is a narrow passageway that protects the primary nerve
in your hand, as well as the tendons that control your fingers. When this
nerve becomes inflamed, pinched, or compressed, carpal tunnel syndrome
may develop.This condition affects the hands, fingers, and arms of the
patient. Symptoms include tingling, numbness, loss of strength and grip,
and loss of dexterity in the affected limb.
Back injuries. Back injuries, such as lumbar strain and disc herniation, are often caused
by poor posture and sitting for long periods of time. Employees with desk
jobs are at high risk for suffering back strain, and patients may experience
pain, stiffness, tingling in the legs, and decreased mobility. Back strain
and spinal injuries may also be caused by lifting heavy objects without
using proper support. Jobs where you have to lift heavy equipment or machines,
or jobs that require you to bend over repeatedly, put you at risk for
developing serious back injuries.
Shoulder injuries. Injuries to the shoulder often result from lifting objects or using awkward
postures to perform work duties. If you have to lift heavy loads without
proper support, your shoulder and rotator cuff may suffer damage. Over
time, if you don’t take action to treat the condition and correct
your posture, your shoulder may suffer serious injuries. Muscle and ligament
strains, as well as frozen shoulder (when scar tissue builds up in the
shoulder joint), may develop.
Hearing loss. Hearing loss is a debilitating condition that can be caused by long-term
exposure to loud noises. If you work at a construction site or in the
welding industry, you probably have a very loud work environment. Without
proper ear protection, your hearing could gradually decrease, leaving
you partially or fully deaf. This is a severe, yet common, wear and tear
injury that is considered catastrophic.
Tendonitis. Tendonitis occurs when a tendon, particularly in your elbow, wrist, shoulder,
or other joint, becomes inflamed. This causes severe pain and may limit
your mobility. Tendons connect your muscles to your bones. If they become
irritated by repetitive strain, it can lead to long-term side effects
that may hinder your quality of life and ability to maintain employment.
How to Avoid Wear & Tear Injuries
One way to protect yourself from wear and tear injuries is to create an
ergonomic work environment. Ergonomics is the science of building a work
environment to maximize the comfort of the employee. This means you should
request an ergonomic chair to support proper posture while you sit, and
you should also request a convertible standing desk to avoid the strain
of sitting in one position all day long. You may also benefit from using
an ergonomic keyboard and mouse.
Furthermore, it is important to have adequate lifting equipment, and to
use proper posture when lifting heavy loads. Stretching out your muscles
periodically can also increase your strength and flexibility, reducing
your chances of developing tendonitis, carpal tunnel, back strain, and
In order to avoid hearing loss, it is important to wear adequate protection.
Ear plugs or earmuffs can protect your hearing while still allowing you
to do your job. While employer are required to provide ear protection
in loud working environments (generally above 90 decibels), they are not
required to do so in moderately noisy environments, which could still
damage your hearing over time. It is important to be proactive and to
take necessary steps to avoid wear and tear injuries.
The Law Offices of Wax & Wax provides efficient representation to injured
workers. Our Glendale workers’ comp attorneys will analyze your
situation, help you file the necessary documents, and tenaciously uphold
your right to compensation. Call us today at (818) 946-0608 to receive
a free consultation.