The Understated Injury: Overexertion

82183-GettyImages_83665722Injuries related to overexertion account for over 3 million hospital visits a year. Most of these injuries are preventable. Use your head; avoid pushing your body past its limits.

Physical Overexertion

According to the National Safety Council (NSC), physical overexertion is the most common cause of workers compensation claims. These types of injuries usually occur through repetitive motion such as typing, lifting heavy objects, or working in an awkward position. The pain is often acute, though it will decrease after medical care and preventative measures are taken. However, if the overexertion is constant, acute pain can become chronic, leading to problems such as carpal tunnel syndrome and osteoarthritis.

via The Understated Injury: Overexertion.

Safe Patient Handling

Overexertion incidents are the leading source of workers’ compensation claims and costs in healthcare settings. The primary outcome associated with such incidents are musculoskeletal disorders MSDs. MSD risks are found in housekeeping, food service and other areas where workers manually handle heavy, awkward loads or perform repetitive forceful hand work. The single greatest risk factor for MSDs in healthcare workers is the manual moving and repositioning of patients, residents or clients. Rising obesity rates in the United States impact the physical demands on caregivers. The aging of the workforce likely contributes to the problem; the average age of a registered nurse in the U.S. is approximately 47 years. Also contributing to the negative health consequences of manual handling is the shortage of nurses—Peter Buerhaus, a researcher at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, has estimated that there will be a shortage of 250,000 nurses by the year 2025 in the US.

via CDC – Safe Patient Handling – NIOSH Workplace Safety and Health Topic.

Stop the Strain at Work

Overexertion has long been among the leading causes of nonfatal workplace injuries, and attempts to combat it continue to be a burden on employers and their pocketbooks.  An estimated 3.5 million overexertion injuries occur every year, most of which are from excessive lifting, lowering, pushing, pulling or carrying. Back injuries are the most common form of overexertion in the workplace and can result in huge costs. According to a 2010 report from the Boston-based Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety, in 2008, overexertion cost businesses $13.4 billion in direct workers’ compensation costs – accounting for more than 25 percent of the overall $53.4 billion national burden.

via 6 11 Stop the Strain.