Pushing, pulling, carrying, lifting, bending, twisting: Some jobs require a great deal of physical work; but even sedentary jobs may require minor activities that can lead to back injuries. In fact, statistics show that back injuries are fairly common among American workers. According to the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA), back injuries are the most common type of workplace injuries among employees today.
Some of these injuries are minor, can heal on their own, and may be alleviated with at-home remedies (such as ibuprofen and rest). Other back injuries can be a bit more substantial and may require physical therapy or extended medical care from a chiropractor Rockville MD relies on. This kind of injury may limit a person’s ability to perform their job for a short period of time. In the worst cases, a severe back injury can cause permanent damage and may prevent the person from returning to their job again.
Common on-the-job back injuries include:
- Lower back strains and sprains: Lower back injuries are fairly common among workers. Employees who must sit or stand for long periods of time may develop pain in their lower back, while employees who are very active could easily sustain a sprain. Most of these injuries are mild and may be treated with pain medication and physical therapy.
- Bulging, herniated, and slipped discs: In between each vertebra bone sits a soft disc that acts as a shock absorber. When one of these discs slips out of place or is damaged, this can cause a great deal of pain.
- Pinched nerves: When a disc pushes against a nerve in the back, this is called a pinched nerve. This type of injury can be very painful and can affect the neck, back, and legs.
- Fractured vertebrae: Fractured vertebrae can require substantial medical care. Injuries that result from traumatic accidents, such as motor vehicle accidents or heavy machinery malfunctions, can include fractured vertebrae.
- Degenerative disc disease: As we get older our lumbar spine discs suffer wear and tear. If an accident increases the wear and tear, you may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits in Virginia. If a work accident aggravates, accelerates, or exacerbates your pre-existing lumbar spine disease, you can win your claim.
Here’s something to keep in mind: No matter the type of on-the-job back injury you suffer, you must prove that a specific event caused a sudden, obvious mechanical or structural change to the body. Repetitive stress injuries are often more difficult to prove in a workers compensation claim, but injuries that result from repetitive motions may still be covered in a claim.
Even if you have a history of chronic back pain or prior back surgeries, you should still seek the advice of an experienced workers compensation lawyer if you hurt your back on the job. If the accident caused additional damage, you may still be entitled to compensation.
Thanks to our friends and contributors from Pain & Arthritis Relief Center for their insight into lower back pain after an accident.