If you or someone you love has suffered due to a back or neck injury, you know these injuries can cause pain and disability for weeks, months, and, in some cases, even years. What many people don't know is that neck and back injuries aren't always the result of a sudden accident - they can occur over years while on the job, and many workers are more prone to back and neck injuries than others. Workers who perform heavy lifting, frequent twisting, loading cargo, repetitive work, overexertion, or driving long distances are especially at risk.
Read on to find out what could be causing that pain in your back or neck.
Workplace neck and back injuries are not always the result of a sudden, isolated event. In fact, most workplace injuries develop over time from minor, repetitive motions that are performed on a frequent basis, such as lifting items, climbing ladders, or even sitting in chairs. Repetitive stress injuries or disorders (RSDs) account for about 60% of all work-related injuries, and one in eight American workers has been diagnosed with an RSD at one time or another. Fortunately, employees can recover from these types of injuries through the workers' compensation system.
Motor Vehicle Accidents
Delivery drivers, traveling salespersons, and others who drive regularly for their job have an increased risk of being involved in a car accident-which can be seriously damaging to the neck and back. Neck and back injuries such as whiplash, rotated vertebrae, fractured vertebrae, and pinched nerves are common injuries for those who have been involved in a crash. If you are experiencing pain in your neck or back after a car accident, getting an accurate diagnosis of your injuries is crucial.
Slips and Falls
According to Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), most general industry incidents involve slips, trips, and falls and over one million Americans suffer a slip, trip, and fall injury every year. Poor lighting, wet floors, broken floor boards, and defective handrails can all lead to a slip and fall accident. The impact of hitting the hard ground can easily cause major damage to the neck and back.
There are more than 50,000 "struck by falling object" OSHA recordables every year in the United States, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That's one injury caused by a dropped object every 10 minutes. Working beneath scaffolds or other areas where overhead work is being performed puts workers at risk from falling objects. The force of being hit by a heavy object that has come from above is almost certain to cause a neck or back injury.
Are you suffering from neck or back pain as the result of an on the job accident or repetitive motion injury? The team at Dugan & Associates has decades of experience with Pennsylvania workers' compensation law, and we're ready to look at your case. Contact us for a consultation.