As a nurse, you have a calling to care for and attend to your patients. Like other professionals, however, nurses face a myriad of occupational hazards. And one of the most common injuries nurses suffer at work is chronic back pain.
If you sustain back injuries as a result of your work, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. These payments are meant to take care of your treatment costs as well as other damages. But how exactly do these injuries happen?
Here are three common causes of back injuries among nurses.
1. Overuse and repetitive tasks
From lifting and repositioning patients to transferring them from one bed to the next, nurses perform a range of repetitive tasks while on duty. Over time, these tasks can strain your back leading to chronic pain.
2. Improper bending and lifting
As a nurse, you will likely bend over when attending to your patients or lifting equipment. Applying improper techniques while performing these tasks can lead to serious lower back pain over time.
3. Lack of rest
Sleep gives your muscles time to relax and rejuvenate. If you are working long shifts without rest, you will likely experience lower back pain among other injuries.
So how long do you have to pursue benefits if you are hurt at work
Every state has a time limit within which you must act following a work-related injury or illness. This is known as the statute of limitations period. In Louisiana, you have 30 days from the date of your diagnosis to notify your employer of your back injury and one year to bring your workers’ compensation claim.
Back pain can impact your movement and ability to perform your duties. If you develop chronic back pain that is attributable to your job, you need to consider pursuing workers’ compensation benefits.