The Most Common Symptoms of Repetitive Strain Injuries

Many employees who work in manufacturing plants, on construction sites, or in offices perform the same physical tasks daily. Whether they lift heavy materials, work with vibrating tools, or keyboard most of the day, these repetitive tasks eventually take a toll on their body. If you work in a similar environment and perform the same duties every day, you need to learn the symptoms that often indicate damage from repetitive tasks.

Where Does it Hurt?

Recent surveys regarding repetitive strain injuries have shown that most work-related injuries involve the wrists, fingers, forearms, and thumbs. However, stiffness of the neck and shoulders, lower back pain, or feet and ankle pain can also occur. The type of injuries that you develop depends on your job and how often you perform its tasks.

Some of the most common symptoms associated with repetitive strain injuries include:

  • Pain
  • Numbness
  • Tingling
  • Dull aches
  • Throbbing
  • Stiffness

Repetitive strain injuries are often categorised into two types: RSI 1 and RSI 2.

Type RSI 1

The following well-defined syndromes often result from performing repetitive tasks on the job:

  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome – A few employees experience the compression of the median nerve in the wrist.
  • Tendinopathy – This medical affliction involves the inflammation of a tendon. Tennis elbow is a type of tendinopathy.
  • Tenosynovitis – A few jobs cause inflammation of the sheath around tendons.

Type RSI 2

This type of RSI includes symptoms that do not fit within a defined syndrome, such as those mentioned above. For example, they may not include inflammation, swelling, or any damage to the nerves.

Employers’ Responsibility

RSIs cost businesses countless hours in lost productivity. For example, over 4.9 million hours were wasted in 2003 and 2004. Therefore, employers are obligated to prevent absenteeism resulting from an injury. They must provide training to ensure tasks are completed correctly, provide equipment that an employee can adjust instead of forcing the employee to adjust to the equipment, and provide work breaks or opportunities to change duties to prevent RSIs from developing.

For office workers, an employer must provide adjustable chairs and workstations, as well as glare screens for monitors and foot rests. Workers in manufacturing plants and on construction sites should also receive training to properly handle the company’s equipment and take breaks to prevent carpal tunnel syndrome or other RSIs.

If employers do not provide ergonomic equipment or proper training to prevent RSIs from occurring, an injured employee can receive help by filing a repetitive strain claim from UK Claim Lawyers. As with any injury, employees should report any symptoms of an illness to their employers, because the work tasks may have caused them.

Even if an employer provides training and equipment to help prevent RSIs, you can file a claim for compensation if you can prove your illness or RSI is related to your work duties. If you are having RSI symptoms, you should see your doctor and contact a solicitor to help you file a claim.