Back in May we wrote up some tips to help prevent the risk of disability in everyday life, but sometimes injuries that prevent us from working happen in the very place we earn a living. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that in 2011, there were 117 cases of workplace injuries per 10,000 workers, causing them to take time away from their job. Most full-time employers offer benefits that cover workmen’s compensation and disability, but it’s often at a percentage below normal pay. Be sure to keep yourself safe in the workplace to avoid a cut to your paycheck during recovery.
- Keep a Strong Back
This is about more than just “bend at the knees, not at the back”-type advice. Keeping a strong back outside of work will prevent injuries on the clock. If you don’t have a gym membership (and use it regularly), go for a jog or walk each night. Even the smallest amounts of regular exercise will do wonders for your posture.
- Stay Hydrated
Healthy muscles consist of about 70 percent water. It’s important to drink plenty throughout the day, but just how much? The Mayo Clinic recommends about three liters for men and 2.2 liters for women each day. Soda and other sugary drinks should be avoided as much as possible, especially when you’re working hardest. Hydrated muscles aren’t only more efficient, they help prevent pulls and strains that cause injury.
- Get Some Sleep
Improper sleep leads to fatigue, fatigue leads to carelessness, and carelessness leads to injury. You should be sleeping 6.5 to 8 hours each night. Anything less and you’re not only robbing yourself of energy throughout the day, your body is at risk to both injury and illness from a lowered immune system.
- Eat Right
A proper diet isn’t just for a healthy body fat percentage and nutrients. A poor diet consisting of sugar and preservatives can cause inflammation in the body which leads to heart disease and movement system disorders. Those types of discomforts that affection functional movements can increase the risk of injury when you’re on the job.
- Know Your Company’s Policies
“Is this my job?” It’s a phrase that’s looked down on in the workplace, but when it comes to your safety, it’s valid. If a task at your workplace puts your safety at risk, know if that task is something you even signed up for when you took the job. Companies like Annuity.org provide information regarding settlements for workers claiming disability and compensation. Arm yourself with the facts before taking risks on the job.
- Trust Your Gut
If a job doesn’t look right or doesn’t feel right, chances are it isn’t right. It’s important to know your mental and physical limits at work. If you feel stressed, fatigued or even hurt, don’t risk turning a pain into an injury. Keep your supervisor informed when something doesn’t feel right. He or she wants to keep you safe and healthy just as much as you.