California workers should not be in pain when they clock in, but this is a reality for many people. Job duties and workplace accidents cause much of this daily pain. Like other people in California, you are a hard worker and want to do your best to keep going, but this can make an already bad situation so much worse. Instead, you might be able to access workers’ compensation benefits while you recover.
Workers’ compensation benefits are for more than just traumatic injuries that land people in the hospital for weeks on end. In fact, musculoskeletal disorders are the most common types of workplace injuries. Although you can develop an MSD in a serious accident, you are probably more likely to develop one just by carrying out your regular work duties.
Are musculoskeletal disorders serious?
MSDs are very serious. Even when promptly treated they can still cause pain for years. Some victims never fully recover and have to deal with their MSDs for the rest of their lives. Here are just a few examples of MSDs that you might already be familiar with:
- Rotator cuff tendonitis
- Tendon or muscle strain
- Herniated or ruptured disk
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
You might have noticed that these types of injuries have something in common with one another. MSDs are a form of repetitive motion injuries, which are also called overuse or repetitive stress injuries. When you perform the same action over and over again, you are at risk of getting seriously hurt.
Repetitive motion injuries in the workplace
The Bureau of Labor Statistics says that these types of injuries make up about 30% of workers’ compensation spending. Some people are not even getting help for their injuries, either. When 2,000 people were surveyed about MSDs, 68% said their job duties exacerbated or caused their injuries and pain.
What makes this more upsetting is that employers are not doing anything. Of those who said work made their pain worse, 33% said their bosses knew about the problems but would not take action to fix them. It is important to point out that this figure only represents the workers who are certain that their bosses know about the safety risks.
Young workers are suffering
Workers between the ages of 18 and 24 report the highest rates of work-related MSD injuries. The number of complaints actually decreases as workers age, too. Workers age 55 or older report the fewest problems related to job duties and MSDs.
Of course, there is no age limit for injuries. Sadly, you already understand this all too well. You also understand that you need help recovering. When you successfully apply for workers’ compensation benefits, you are securing financial stability that will support you through the recovery process. Getting those benefits is not easy though, so it is generally much better to work with an attorney who is experienced with the California workers’ compensation system.