When you hurt your back at work, it could be instantaneous. You may try to lift something and end up on the floor next to that object because of the excruciating pain that results from overexerting yourself. On the other hand, you may notice a slow increase in painful symptoms because of the constant lifting, twisting or bending that you do at your job.
Whether you have a traumatic injury caused in a specific incident or a repetitive stress injury, you will need medical support for your back to heal. How do you ensure that you get the best treatment possible and have the best prognosis given the extent of your injury?
Do not delay examination and treatment
One of the worst things that you can do when you hurt your back is to try to wait it out and see if you get better on your own. Unless you have the luxury of affording a few weeks off of work and complete rest at home, you may just end up hurting yourself worse by trying to go about your daily life with a back injury.
The sooner that a doctor diagnoses you and starts treating you, the more likely you are to fully recover. Additionally, the doctor’s recommendations can help you avoid worsening your injury.
Follow the doctor’s orders
If a doctor tells you that you need to take weeks off of work to let your muscles heal and allow the inflammation to subside, you need to follow those instructions to get better. The same is true of directions to limit how much you lift or to change your job responsibilities.
Getting the right treatment and following medical orders will not only improve your symptoms but will also help protect your rights and benefits. Those that don’t follow medical orders may have a harder time getting workers’ compensation benefits later.
Know that you will need outside help
The workers’ compensation system is not easy to navigate, and employers or their insurance providers may fight against expensive back injury claims. To protect yourself from retaliation, get the maximum compensation possible and improve your chances of fully healing, you need outside support.
An attorney who knows your legal rights and is familiar with cutting-edge treatments for back injuries can help guide you through your treatment and your claim. Instead of trying to learn how to fill out complicated paperwork and make sense of your own medical records, you can focus on healing and getting back to work while your lawyer manages the details for you.
Taking the right steps when you realize you have a back injury will make getting workers’ compensation benefits for that injury simpler.