Repetitive Stress Injuries: Risks Involved With Repetitive Work

  • Posted on: Mar 6 2023
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Workers who engage in manual labor often face various risks, including repetitive stress injuries. Repetitive stress injuries, or RSIs, occur when you perform the same actions repeatedly over a period of time. These types of injuries can range from mild to severe and can cause pain and other symptoms that can interfere with daily activities.

This blog post will explore the different types of RSIs, their associated risk factors and symptoms, and how a physical therapist can help.

Different Types of Repetitive Stress Injuries

RSIs can take various forms and involve different parts of the body. One common type is carpal tunnel syndrome, a condition that develops when there is consistent pressure on the median nerve in your wrist. This injury is particularly common among those who work with computers or other electronic devices for long hours.

Prolonged use of keyboards and other input devices can cause repetitive wrist motions that can strain the tendons and ligaments in your hands. As a result, you may experience numbness, tingling, or pain.

Another form of RSIs includes epicondylitis—also known as tennis elbow or trigger finger. Epicondylitis occurs when the tendons in your elbow become inflamed, which results in pain and tenderness. The condition occurs when you perform certain activities that require repetitive motions, like when you constantly use a hammer or scissors.

Risk Factors for Repetitive Stress Injuries

Prolonged, repetitive movements can lead to an increased risk of an RSI. Such types of activity strain your muscles, tendons, and bones, which can lead to injury. For instance, if you work in a job that requires you to do the same motions over and over again, such as typing or machinery operations, this repetitive movement can eventually cause an RSI.

The risk of RSI is greater for those who work in cramped or awkward positions, lift heavy objects, have poor posture, or use vibrating power tools. These conditions can lead to the overuse of certain body parts, which can leave these parts prone to injury.

Additionally, people with pre-existing conditions are more likely to experience increased pain and discomfort when they repeatedly perform the same motions. The symptoms of their condition can get worse because of repetitive movements. For instance, if you have arthritis, you may experience greater levels of pain and inflammation when you repeatedly lift heavy objects or type on a computer.

How a Physical Therapist Can Help with Repetitive Stress Injuries

Physical therapy is a safe and effective treatment for many types of RSIs. Your physical therapist can help address the underlying cause of your injury to reduce pain, improve mobility, and restore function.

For instance, if you suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome, a physical therapist give you strengthening exercises to improve function of your wrist, as well as provide tips on stretches that can help relax tight muscles. By improving strength, function and movement of your wrist, and reducing constriction and tightness of the muscles we can help to reduce pain and improve mobility.

Physical therapists can also provide treatments for epicondylitis with options such as myofascial release and trigger point therapy. These treatments help reduce inflammation and improve joint movement to reduce pain and stiffness.

Additionally, physical therapists can advise on lifestyle changes that can help prevent further injury. They may recommend changes in your workstation, posture, or exercise routine to reduce stress on the affected area.

At  Maximum Orthopedics , we understand that sometimes your job can take a toll on your body. Our team can provide the necessary treatments and advice to help you manage your repetitive stress injury and return to normal activities. Contact us today to book an appointment and get on the road to recovery.

Posted in: Blog, Orthopedics, Work Injuries, Workers Compensation Benefits

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