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5 things for teachers to know about repetitive motion injuries

Teachers are under a lot of stress to meet certain benchmarks set by legislators. Often, teachers put their own health on the back burner while they try to meet these marks so they can continue to make a difference in the life of each child.

#1: Various areas of the body are affected

Repetitive motion injuries affect the neck, back, joints and other areas of the body. The location of the injury depends on what activities the teacher is doing on a repetitive basis. Teachers of younger children might suffer from repetitive motion back injuries because they often bend over to help the children. Teachers of older children might have an issue with carpal tunnel syndrome because of vast amounts of typing.

#2: The condition doesn't always show up right away

One single accident isn't the cause of a repetitive motion injury. Instead, they are the result of a cumulative problem. You may notice that the affected area starts to get a little more sore than it previously was. You might notice that doing certain activities is a bit more painful. You might take longer to recover from the day or week of teaching. The pain and effects might become greater as time progresses until you simply can't ignore it any longer.

#3: Proper safety procedures can help prevent repetitive motion injuries

Repetitive motion injuries are preventable with the right equipment and safety procedures. Bending your knees to help younger children can prevent back injuries from bending over at the waist. Using an ergonomic keyboard and proper arm positioning can help prevent carpal tunnel syndrome. School districts should provide teachers with the vital safety elements that can help them to prevent injuries.

#4: Medical treatment is often necessary

Repetitive motion injuries can require medical intervention. You may need to take medication, go through rehabilitation or even have surgery. This can mean you have to take time off of work or that you will have to use your summer vacation to handle medical issues .

#5: Workers' compensation is possible

Workers' compensation coverage isn't only for injuries related to accidents. The program also covers repetitive motion injuries and illnesses as long as they are work-related. Workers' compensation coverage can help to pay medical bills and wage replacement, depending on the circumstances. Be sure that you file a report about your injury with the school district and take the necessary steps to file for workers' compensation.

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