You may have worked for years with a certain company, whether it's a construction business or an iron works company. Day in and day out, you faithfully perform your duties. Then, one day, you turn to the side or straighten up and feel an unimaginable pain in your back. You can barely hold yourself up, let alone carry and handle materials. You may feel tempted to try to push through the pain, but doing so could result in an even worse injury.
When you hurt your back at work, you should tell your employer right away. Whether it is a traumatic injury due to lifting or a repetitive stress injury after years of physical labor, you deserve medical care. That could mean chiropractic adjustments, surgery, physical therapy or assistance with pain management. If your employer doesn't have medical offices on site, you should seek out care at a nearby hospital or doctor's office. Once your injury gets substantiated by a medical professional, you can file a claim for workers' compensation.
Workers' compensation exists to protect working people
You shouldn't have to worry about whether or not you'll be able to pay your bills after years of hard work. That's why workers' compensation exists. Workers' compensation will cover your medical bills, as well as your lost wages. While you won't get paid the full amount of your average weekly income, you should receive enough financial support to ensure you can meet obligations like your mortgage while you recover.
For some workers, however, back injuries may result in permanent disability. There is a broad spectrum of back injuries, from nerve damage and repetitive stress issues to hernias and slipped discs. Some of these conditions can get treated with physical therapy, adjustments or surgery. Others may persist for the rest of your life. Medical care can help you reduce symptoms but may not fully reverse the injury. This could mean your back injury creates a permanent disability.
Back injuries can prevent you from doing your job
If your job involves standing or even sitting for long periods, you could require special accommodations to return to work. It's also possible that your condition will prevent you from working in the future. Although you could receive job training, your injuries could keep you from finding a job with similar pay. In cases where you become unable to work as the result of a work injury, you may end up qualifying for permanent disability.
In order to ensure that you receive the benefits and coverage you deserve, it's important to both report the injury to your employer as soon as possible and file a workers' compensation claim in a timely manner. Failing to do either could make it more difficult to connect with the benefits you deserve.