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Missouri Sunset

Returning to work too soon after a workplace injury

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Posted on August 20, 2022

Many work-related injuries require significant time to heal correctly and thoroughly. However, If you sustain a qualifying injury while performing your job, Missouri’s workers’ compensation benefits can help you pay your bills until you can return to work.

Unfortunately, returning to work too soon can lead to physical and financial complications.

Why do injured workers return to their jobs prematurely?

Workers’ compensation benefits provide financial support to injured workers while they heal and release their employers from liability. Still, those with legitimate claims frequently return to work too soon, against their doctor’s wishes and without job or schedule modifications. Their decision to start working before they are ready stems from a fear of losing employment, pressure from family members or injury-related self-esteem issues.

How does returning to work too soon affect recovery?

Disregarding a medical professional’s recommendations for resuming work can lead to adverse physical and financial consequences. For example, although an injury’s initial discomfort and pain may lessen significantly or disappear in the weeks after it occurs, the affected body part may remain weak and vulnerable to reinjury for a significant period. In addition, workers who perform movements and activities before completing an entire course of treatment or therapy may experience symptom relapse or reinjure themselves with permanent consequences.

In addition to complicating their physical recovery, workers who return to work too soon before they are physically able may experience the negative financial ramifications of reinjury. In addition to extending their recovery period and time away from work, they forfeit additional workers’ compensation benefits for disregarding their doctors’ recommendations.

After sustaining a work-related injury, your primary focus should be on recovering. Employers who pressure workers to return to their jobs before they are ready or without temporary accommodations compromise their employees’ well-being.