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How to avoid repetitive strain injuries

Repetitive strain injuries are frustrating because they're usually caused by an action you can't avoid doing. For example, how do you heal the strained and inflamed tendon in your hand if you're a computer programmer and need to type all day long?

The tendons and muscles used in typing are only going to get worse until you take the time needed to rest and recover, but how do you make a living while you're getting better? This is where workers' compensation insurance comes in. Many California employees are able to qualify for wage replacement benefits while they're resting and getting better from a repetitive stress injury.

A repetitive strain injury checklist

What if you could avoid your repetitive stress injuries in the first place? Let's take a look at 15 general pieces of advice that any worker in danger of repetitive stress injuries can do to help prevent them from happening:

  • Maintain good posture instead of sitting in a "lazy" way.
  • Use appropriate technique when doing your job, as that technique probably designed to avoid injury.
  • Keep your computer time under four hours per day if possible.
  • If you must sit at a computer, take breaks and make them frequent.
  • Establish a regular exercise routine to get your body "unstuck" from being in your normal working posture for too long.
  • Take care of your stress levels at work and do everything you can to support peace in the workplace.
  • If you have diabetes or arthritis or other medical conditions, talk to your doctor about how to avoid injuries on the job.
  • Get a full night of sleep every night.
  • Ask your employer for a more comfortable work environment.
  • Pay attention to little aches and pains, and if they don't get better, seek medical attention immediately.

Take the rest time you need to get better

Sometimes, the only thing that will help a repetitive strain injury is rest. You need to stop sitting at the computer typing all day - or stop doing other repetitive activities - so your body can heal. There may be other medical treatments that can help you recover as well. Fortunately, by seeking medical attention and applying for workers' compensation benefits, most California residents can heal from their repetitive strain injuries and get the money they need to pay for rest time and medical care.

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