The days, weeks, and months, following a work injury can be extremely stressful. The process of a worker’s comp injury, from paperwork, appointments, and requirements, can make your days feel long. Not to mention, these things can bring worry over receiving those necessary benefits. Not to mention, recovery, and the feelings that come along with it. There’s no denying that when it comes to work injury stress, there are plenty of different ways that it can creep in. So, how do you cope with it? And what can you do to manage your feelings, and ease your mind?
Work Injury Stress: Tips for Coping
Talk to a Worker’s Compensation Attorney
Along with a work injury, comes a lot of financial stress and pressure. Your work injury likely will prevent you from being able to perform the responsibilities that are set forth by your position. For this reason, you’ll likely need some period of time spent away from your position. While, with a work injury, you should receive benefits it can be daunting to watch all of those expenses add up. Furthermore, if you notice that your employer is trying to deny the compensation you deserve in any capacity, you should speak with an attorney. While, in many cases, you won’t have to worry about your employer trying to get over on you— that is not always the case. So, with cases that seem to be headed in this direction, or any major injury case, you should speak with an attorney.
Educate yourself on the injury
Your doctors are knowledgeable, and there to answer the questions you have about your injury, and resulting issues that might arise. So, make a list of questions, make use of your time. After all, you’ll be spending quite a bit of time in the doctor’s office following an injury. Furthermore, do your own research from reliable sources. It’s easy to feel out of control when it comes to a work injury, being that you’re having to meet worker’s comp requirements. So, getting information is one way to reduce stress, and take control.
Build a Relationship With Your Doctor
This doctor is not the doctor you’re used to seeing. However, this is the doctor who will be getting up close and personal with your injury. So, build trust with that doctor. It can be easy to feel distrustful of a doctor you had no control over choosing. But, you have the chance to ask questions, take notes, and follow their recovery plan. You’ll be spending a lot of time with the doctor. So, finding ways to trust them and their process can make a big difference in how you feel overall.
Rely on the Support of Family and Friends
Since this can be such a difficult time, it’s important to reach out and accept help from others. Sometimes, allowing people to help us can be one of the hardest aspects of dealing with an injury. However, fighting against it will only add to your worries and increase your work injury stress. So, try to allow your family and friends to be the support system you need.
When it comes to our loved ones, we never want to see them in pain. Furthermore, when facing a work injury, you’ll often notice your loved ones feeling down, depressed, and feeling discouraged by the recovery process. Depending on the injury at the hand, recovery can take months. Those months can feel long and lonely, especially when you spend them mainly on your own. So, what can you do, as a loved one, to show support post-work injury? You’re willing to do anything to help, but it can often be difficult to know where to start…
How-To Show Support Post-Work Injury: Supporting Loved Ones
Spend Time Together
The one thing many people facing work injury will deal with is isolation. This is no one’s fault. After all, most everyone is going about business as usual. However, when you lose the routine of your daily life, and you’re going at it alone, depression can set in. So, take some time out to spend time with your loved one. The absolute best way to show support post-work injury, is to simply give your time and company.
Let them vent
There are a lot of feelings that come along with an injury of any kind, but especially one that alters your way of life. So, be there to listen. This person is likely feeling frustration, discouragement, fear, anger, and many many other emotions. The best thing you can do for them is listen and let them vent it out. There is nothing more therapeutic than to get it all out there, and have someone allow you to. It’s not that you need to say anything in particular, or fix the situation. Being there, listening, and being a shoulder to lean on is almost always enough.
Be there for them, but make yourself a priority to
You can do plenty to help the people you love, but self-care is also extremely important. Maybe you’re taking them to appointments, making meals, cleaning the house, and doing every single thing you can. But, sometimes you find that you’re irritated, short-tempered, and tired. So, take some time to yourself as well. You want to help, and you’re doing a great deal. But, your life and well-being is also a priority. Don’t cause yourself pain, or even an injury, by overexerting yourself. Your loved one will understand if you need to go home, take a shower, or catch up on homework, or so forth.
As we move towards the winter months, winter workplace accidents become much more likely to happen. You might not consider how the different times of year can increase or decrease your chances of getting hurt. But, with each season comes different elements to prepare for. So, we’re here to help. Below, we’re going to make sense of some of the most common winter workplace accidents, and steps you can take as employees (and employers) to keep yourself, and others, safe from danger. As we all know, accidents do happen. However, by practicing caution and care, we can reduce the number of incidents dramatically…
Winter Workplace Accidents: Common Incidents and Prevention
Shivers and Slips
If you work outside frequently, you know how hot and cold it can get depending on the time of year. Therefore, wearing appropriate dress can keep you from overheating, getting frostbite, and receiving other weather-related traumas. In the winter months, wear gloves and thick jackets. You want to be able to brave the elements if you know you’ll be spending a lot of time amongst them. Furthermore, if you’re in a work area, make sure to wear slip resistant shoes. When there’s snow on the ground, or water, you might find that there are more areas in and outside that can be easy to slip on. So, keep your eyes peeled, and also keep your feet planted on the ground. Good traction goes a long way in doing just that.
Keeping Floors and Ground Slip Resistant
As we mentioned above, tracking in snow and water can become potentially disastrous for employees and employers. For this reason, having mats in place is essential to eliminating a few of those accidents. By placing proper mats near entry and exit ways, you encourage employees to dry off their feet before entering the workspace. In doing so, you reduce the number of potential fall spots without even making too much of an effort. Furthermore, shovel walkways and slick spots. In taking the time to clear walkways, you can protect your employees and even customers. While ice is outside of your control, a customer will often make their accident your responsibility to care for.
Allow for a bit more down time
When you’re working outside in the cold, having a moment to knock off that chill can go a long way in preventing winter workplace injuries. When the space you’re working in is unheated, take a moment. Warm those bones for a moment, and then get back to work. Making your safety a priority, or the safety of your employees, is key to preventing accidents.
Remember that accidents do, and will, happen
While we can take plenty of steps to prevent accidents, there will still be an ‘oops’ every now and then. If you, or one of your employees, faces a winter workplace accident, it’s important that you treat it with care. File a claim, see a doctor, and take the time to heal properly. Every accident is different, but the chance for a full recovery is something we all hope to see. We wish you luck in treating an injury, and offer our services if you find that you may need them.
Depending on the conditions under which you work, you might find that you’re facing a handful of occupational hazards, or resulting injuries. While some may not be very serious, others can have a life long impact. If you work in factories, or construction sites, you might be exposed to loud noises on a daily basis. For this reason, among others, hearing loss can be a potential lifelong work injury that you receive. If you find yourself suffering from any degree of hearing loss as a result of the workplace, it might be a good idea to speak with an attorney about what actions you can take to compensate for your loss of quality of life.
Hearing Loss as a Work Injury
The state of North Carolina has some guidelines in place for how to deal with these cases. Like many other diseases and injuries, your hearing issues can be a direct result of your work environment. Therefore, employees may be able to receive workers comp for this. But there are some stipulations in these cases.
Total vs partial hearing loss. Permanent sensorineural loss of hearing in both ears would result in workers comp. In short, all that means is permanent deafness due to damage in the ear caused by exposure to a loud noise. In this case, an employees may receive up to 150 weeks of workers comp. That means around 2/3 of the employees weekly salary paid out for 150 weeks.
Partial hearing loss. In the case of partial hearing loss, the employer will only pay for any hearing lost while working at the company. For instance, most companies will ask a new employer to take a hearing test before beginning work. Therefore, they will compare the pre-test to a current test.
Loss in both ears. In order to receive workers comp, an employee must suffer loss in both ears. If an employee only experiences a loss of hearing in one ear, then he will not be eligible for workers comp.
Like many other injuries, hearing loss can leave you eligible for workers comp. However, having an attorney in place can help you make that determination. We wish you luck in facing this issue, and offer our condolences for you loss of quality of life.
Worker’s compensation benefits come in many different forms and fashions. After all, there are many different stages to recovering from an injury, and getting back on your feet. You have initial recovery, rehabilitation, and getting back to work if you can. When getting back to work, it might be difficult, or impossible, to resume the exact position you help before. For this reason, reduced earnings benefits are a huge relief for injured workers that are getting back to it. But how do they work?
Reduced Earnings Benefits: Understanding Worker’s Comp
You’ll eventually return to work after an accident. When you do, it might take time to get back to your old work duties. Or, you might be confined to light duty return. At this time, you might find that the position you’re holding doesn’t pay quite as much as what you had before. When you face this issue, reduced earnings benefits can come in and compensate for that difference in wage. By introducing this amount, you will be able to maintain your lifestyle, get back to work comfortably, and return to your way of life.
The biggest thing that reduced earnings benefits do for you is provide a peace of mind. An injured worker can come back into the workplace and not worry about their ability to hit the ground running. These benefits can be very helpful in the difficult time following an accident. While this time can be painful and there can be many stressors, money does not need to be one of them. Therefore, these benefits can make for a less stressful transition. Without having to worry about a loss of wages, you can return to work, find your footing once again, and work your way back to full capacity.
Every injured worker’s journey is a little bit different, and their way back to work is no small feat. By providing these benefits, every worker has the chance to come back to work when the time is right, and move forward.
When it comes to worker’s comp, there are all kinds of reasons, and instances, that might have lead to your receiving benefits. From a fall, a hot pan, a broken platform, and even a work party? When you go to work events, and receive an injury, you might come to realize quickly that you’ve fallen into a gray area (no pun intended). After all, you were there because of work, maybe even in the office building— and you got hurt. So what’s the word on work parties and injury? Do I still receive benefits?
Work Events and Injury: Do I Still Receive Benefits?
Well, it depends on a few different things. Most importantly, the reason why you’re there. The first question you need to ask yourself is: do you have to go? Does your boss extend this invitation as an optional event, or does all staff have to make an appearance? This question will become the cornerstone on whether or not you can pursue a claim.
Furthermore, were you drinking at the time of the accident?
If you were able to answer ‘yes’ to the question of required attendance, the next question is about your alcohol intake. Just like with any worker’s comp claim, alcohol can undoubtedly get in the way of your receiving benefits. However, it’s still not impossible to receive those benefits, especially if alcohol was a part of the celebration that was supplied to you.
We see it all the time…
Someone is at a work event, having a good ol’ time mingling with coworkers, friends, and family. However, maybe you take a tumble down the stairs, cut your hand on a broken glass, or fall by the bathroom. When you receive these injuries, you’re likely hoping to have it covered in some capacity. After all, you wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for the work event, and your requested (or required) attendance.
As we’ve said, this is absolutely a gray area of some sort. For this reason, if you face injury at one of your work events, reach out to an attorney! By speaking with a professional, you can decide what is the smartest path to take— or if you even have a case. A consultation is free, and it can tell you a lot about your potential case.