If you have suffered a back injury at work, you are far from alone. Back injuries are among the most common of workplace injuries. If you were hurt at work, workers’ compensation would allow you to seek treatment without paying out of your pocket. The right treatment will alleviate pain, restore function, and enable you to get back to work.
Common Causes for Back Injuries at Work
Your back is in the line of fire every time you go to work. It is easy to injure your back at work, and quick treatment is the key to your recovery.
Lifting heavy objects is a common cause of back injuries at work. When you lift something heavy, it puts force on your back. The extra force can cause a back injury.
Repetitive motions can also cause back injuries. For example, if you have to twist your spine to the left or right each day, you can hurt your back. The repetitive motion puts stress on your back and causes injuries.
Even inactivity can lead to back injuries. For instance, if you sit at your desk for hours each day, your back can begin to hurt. Over time, that pain will get worse and worse until you have a serious injury.
These are just a few of the ways you can hurt your back at work. Fortunately, back injuries respond well to treatment.
Diagnosing Back Injuries
When you make a workers’ compensation claim, for treatment, you will have to go to a doctor who is an authorized WCB medical provider. It’s important to find a doctor who is experienced in treating workers compensation injuries. Your doctor will begin by diagnosing the injury. First, the doctor will talk to you to find out how you injured your back. Then, the doctor will use diagnostic tools to take a closer look at the injury. The tools might include an X-ray, MRI, or CT scan. The doctor will read the images provided and make a diagnosis.
Treating Back Injuries
New York Workers’ compensation insurance will pay for your treatment. Your treatment will depend on the nature of your back injury. Your workers' comp doctor might prescribe muscle relaxants or anti-inflammatory medications. Anti-inflammatory medications can be injected into the back to reduce the swelling and pain. When doctors inject medication, it works quickly.
It’s also likely you will need to go to physical therapy. Your physical therapist will use exercises to improve your flexibility, strength, and range of motion. Also, the physical therapist will likely use ultrasounds, electrical stimulation, heat, massage, and other therapies to alleviate your pain. These therapies can also improve circulation. Increasing the blood flow to the injury speeds up the healing process.
Seeking Treatment for Your On-the-job Injury
If you have suffered an injury at work, follow your company’s protocol for reporting it. You will likely have to report it to a supervisor within 30 days of your injury. Your supervisor will file a workers’ compensation claim with the NYS WCB, and you can seek treatment. Choose a provider who takes workers’ compensation claims so you won’t have to pay out of pocket. Then, you can begin healing and rehabbing your injury. It won’t be long before you are back on the job.