01 Oct How Neck Injuries Can Affect Your Job
It is easy to think that having a neck strain where you cannot turn your head to look while backing out of your parking space, just takes a little more effort than usual. Maybe turn your upper body to compensate for not being able to turn your head without significant resulting pain.
While the parking space might be fine to do that while backing out, you cannot turn your whole upper body to look while on the highway. Your hands, at the standard 10 and 2 o’clock position on the steering wheel, could also move with you when you move your upper body to one side. Suddenly, you find yourself making an unexpected lane change.
In another scenario, if a dangerous situation is unfolding and you have a neck strain injury, any sudden movements to look right or left would cause further resulting pain, interfering with your focus on the road. That could delay your response to avoiding a potential accident by just enough that you do have an accident. Now you could be in a lot more pain from a car accident and resulting injuries, if not dead.
See a Doctor Immediately
If you have an accident to your neck while at work, file a claim at once and go see your doctor. The doctor will want to take x-rays to find out if you have compression in the upper spinal cord, slipped discs, pinched nerves, or some other type of injury that is causing the pain and not allowing you to turn your head.
You may also be fitted with a neck brace so that your head can rest easily without straining neck muscles further while trying to hold up your head. During your recovery period, if you are a driver or work a heavy-lifting job, you will need to stay off work until you are fully healed.
Wear your neck brace while sleeping so your head and neck can remain in a straight position which avoids stress on already-injured muscles. A different kind of pillow may also be suggested to you for use while sleeping, once your neck brace comes off.
Most Common Neck Injuries
Here are the most common symptoms of neck injuries that require going to the doctor to find out more.
- Hard to turn your neck and head to one side. While it can be as simple as sleeping the wrong way, not being able to turn your head at all in one direction, may indicate a displacement of a neck disc.
- Very painful to turn your head. This could be due to muscle spasms and strains in the upper body area, or over-stretched muscles from heavy lifting.
- Weakness or numbness in other areas of your body, such as your legs, arms, or hands. You may have compressed spinal discs or have pinched nerves from a dislocated disc.
Depending on the outcome of your exam and x-rays, your doctor may have you visit a chiropractor (physical adjustments) or a kinesiologist (body weakness) to help with your current issues. If you are already on a workers’ compensation claim, you may not be able to get these services paid for, nor might they be recommended as part of your recovery guidance. You must check your insurance policy first. Sports figures and dancers (ballet and modern) regularly use these services to stay in peak form during their careers.
Keep yourself in good health and avoid actions done in the wrong way, such as picking up heavy objects that put too much strain in the wrong part of the body.
Call our Phoenix Workers Compensation Attorney office for a free consultation. We are here to help you. 602-346-9009.