Did your job lead to your repetitive use injury?

When your job requires that you repeat similar motions for long periods, it can cause the breakdown of the tissues and nerves in one or more areas of your body. The damage may become permanent if you do not receive the proper intervention, which might necessitate a change in your profession.

The pain and discomfort associated with a repetitive stress injury could lead you to the doctor, but is your company on the hook for payment? Learn about common overuse injuries and what you need to take appropriate action with your employer.

What are common signs of an overuse injury?

The repetitive movements associated with some professions can lead to discomfort. If you do not stop the action that causes the pain, it continues to escalate and accompany additional symptoms, including:

  • Burning, throbbing, aching
  • Swelling
  • Weakness
  • Tingling and numbness
  • Cramping

What are common repetitive use injuries?

The most frequently affected areas of the body for repetitive injuries are the fingers, knees, shoulders, elbows and wrists. A stonemason may develop knee pain and damage from constant squatting and kneeling. A construction worker may have to deal with pain in the shoulders, elbows and hands from the over-reliance and utilization of power tools.

However, the hands and wrists generally host the most common repetitive stress injury. Carpal tunnel syndrome begins as wrist pain that gradually worsens over time to encompass a near-complete loss of strength in the hands. This painful and debilitating condition develops from repetitive use of the hands in typing, sewing or product assembly.

When you first experience pain, you should see a doctor for a medical report. Inform the physician of what your job entails so that he or she can determine whether your condition relates back to it.