Any time you repeatedly perform the same movements many times in a row, you’re putting yourself at risk of developing a repetitive motion injury. The injuries can be minor, requiring you to rest just a short time, or a more serious injury that requires medical attention, surgery, physical therapy or other treatments.
Repetition is great for some roles, but it is also harmful in a few different ways. Here’s what you should know about repetitive movements and how they could harm you.
Repetition causes inflammation
It’s possible for repetition of your movements to lead to swelling and strain. For example, if you type every day for several hours a day, you may start to notice swelling in your knuckles or pain in your wrist. At first, these might not stand out, but if you keep doing those repetitive tasks, you could end up in significant amounts of pain. Further use could lead to tendinitis, carpal tunnel and other serious injuries.
What do you need to do if you think a repetitive task is leading to physical trauma?
If you start having pain or dysfunction in a body part that you use for a repetitive task, it’s important to let your employer know about the issue as soon as you can. Initially, it may be a good idea to see a doctor, like your primary care physician, to discuss the options you have to address your concern.
It’s possible that you could need a nerve conduction study or that you could be able to change the way you’re sitting to make a difference in the impact on a joint, for example. There are a variety of options for people with pain, so you’ll want to begin working on determining the cause of the pain and issues you’re dealing with and then look at the treatment options your medical provider may suggest.
If you need treatments, you can talk to your employer about seeking workers’ compensation coverage. Workers’ compensation may cover your medical appointments, therapies, medications and other necessities to help address the problems you’re dealing with.