Physically demanding jobs put workers at risk of overexertion. In fact, overexertion is one of the leading causes of on-the-job injuries. It’s also a leading cause of missed days of work.
Employers have a responsibility to protect their workers from injuries by encouraging safe work practices and providing proper safety equipment. But some workers feel pressure to keep working beyond their physical capabilities. They are more likely to develop overexertion injuries, requiring time away from work.
The workers’ compensation attorneys at the Joye Law Firm understand the repercussions of overexertion stemming from physical and repetitive jobs. If you suffered a job-related injury, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits for lost wages, medical expenses, and more.
What are the Signs of Overexertion?
Overexertion occurs when a particular task or repetitive job leads to an injury due to excessive physical effort. It can occur in any type of industry, whether it’s an administrative assistant lifting a file box or a warehouse worker moving pallets. It’s most common in industries such as construction, healthcare, assembly work, warehouse, and trucking.
Around 25% of workers’ compensation claims are related to overexertion injuries at work. When you push yourself beyond your physical capability, it can negatively affect your overall health. You could pull a muscle, become dehydrated, or pass out and hit your head during the fall. Sprains and muscles are commonly linked to overexertion. Any type of overexertion injury could require time away from work and medical care.
The most common signs of being overworked include:
- Losing your breath and the inability to speak clearly
- Aching joints or sore muscles
- Muscle cramps
- Sharp pain or throbbing in certain parts of the body
The most common tasks that can lead to overexertion include:
- Lifting, carrying, or pulling a heavy object
- Working in an awkward physical position
- Performing tasks in a hot environment
- Throwing objects
- Repetitive motions
- Use of vibrating tools and equipment
- Reaching for materials
- Sitting and standing repeatedly
If you start to feel any signs of being overworked, it’s essential to take a break. Not all jobs provide adequate breaks to recuperate from strenuous activity. It’s crucial for your physical and mental health to take time to recover. The best solutions for avoiding overexertion injuries include:
- Ask for help to perform a strenuous task
- Do stretches so your muscles don’t cramp
- If you’re unable to carry a heavy load, use a cart or hand truck
- Take breaks to allow your muscles to relax
- Drink sufficient amounts of water throughout the day
If you sense you’re nearing the point of overexertion, it’s important to let your body get the rest it needs.