The Surprising New Long-term Effects of Office Injuries

The Surprising New Long-term Effects of Office Injuries

Office injuries are the pits, and to make matters worse an old workplace injury can have a more devastating effect than you might think.

After an initial recovery period, some unlucky workers are met with a more significant decline — accelerating their health deterioration as they age much faster than uninjured peers. According to a recent study published in the Library of Medicine, “permanently impaired injured workers experience more rapidly accelerated health declines than other aging workers.”

So if you’ve suffered from any kind of office injuries and find yourself faring worse for wear years later on — you may be carrying unseen trauma that never healed properly after all this time…

Common Office Injuries

Every year, the amount of workplace injuries in America is staggering. According to BLS research for 2019, US private industry employers witnessed a whopping 2.8 million nonfatal accidents and illnesses happen amongst their workers!

Office workers are most notably prone to joint injuries such as carpal tunnel, eye strain, back pain, and neck problems.

The most common include the following:

  • Repetitive strain injuries (RSIs): These are caused by repetitive motions or movements, like typing and clicking a mouse.
  • Slips, trips, and falls: These are caused by slippery floors or poor lighting.
  • Sprains and strains: These injuries are caused by lifting heavy objects or twisting and bending in awkward positions.
  • Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs): These injuries are caused by lifting or carrying heavy loads or working in awkward positions for extended periods.

Lifetime Effects of Office Injuries

How to fix bad posture caused by working from home (or the Office)

Even those without a diagnosis of permanent disability can feel the lifelong weight of their workplace injury — from medical care to physical therapy and beyond.

Spinal cord damage may cause paralysis, traumatic brain injuries like concussions could result in lost functions, broken bones might require corrective treatment for months on end. The pain? Nothing less than severe; in some cases chronic with no end in sight.

Alongside this is emotional trauma that leads only further away from any quality life previously enjoyed by the employee before suffering such an extreme consequence as part of work culture today…

New York State Office Injuries

The sad fact remains: New York reported 125,500 nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses in 2021 at an incidence rate of 2.2 cases per 100 full-time equivalent workers. Such grim numbers spurred the State Legislature to take action.

In response to this sobering reality, the State Legislature made history on December 12th by passing “Carlos’ Law,” named after an individual who lost his life working construction back in 2015.

This new law seeks justice for those affected while shielding workers from businesses disregarding safety protocols. Carlos’ Law represents a decisive move forward as prosecutions under the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSH Act) are few and far between these days.

The Bottom Line

Office injuries are a major concern today, but there are ways to take action after adverse events occur.

Filing for workers’ compensation, getting legal help, or writing to your local State Legislature is an option. 

In terms of rehabilitation: physical therapy and psychological counseling can help with the healing process in both the short term and long term.

It’s time to start taking office injuries seriously and create a safe workplace for everyone.

How to Avoid the 5 Most Common Office Injuries

How to avoid the 5 most common office injuries

While a day at the office may look safe, hidden risks and injuries often lurk beneath – notably when proper equipment or setup is lacking.

Shockingly enough, research from the CDC found that those in an office environment are 2-2.5 times more likely to suffer injury due to a fall than those who don’t work in offices!

Not only this – long periods of sitting can be damaging for one’s overall health; furthermore, poor posture paired with inadequate  chair and desk setup can result in Repetitive Strain Injuries (RSI).

To keep your workforce healthy and happy (and away from Repetitive Strain Injuries!), make sure you’re aware of these top 5 most common workplace hazards:

1. Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI)

RSI is like the film “Groundhog Day”, but with less romance; it’s the same movement on repeat, day in and day out.

It is an umbrella term that covers a range of injuries caused by overuse, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis and tenosynovitis.

A recent study by Cornell University found that those who use computer keyboards for more than four hours a day have twice the risk of RSI.

How to Avoid?

Set up your workstation ergonomically – adjust the height of your chair, keyboard and monitor to ensure your wrists are straight when typing, and your eyes are level with the top of the screen.

2. Computer Vision Syndrome

The average person stares at a screen for 8-10 hours a day, which can lead to Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS). That’s 70 hours a week, 3640 hours a year and a whopping three years of your life!

CVS is characterized by symptoms such as headaches, blurred vision, dry eyes and neck pain.

Here’s the thing: Blue light isn’t necessarily bad for your eyes – but too much of it can be, especially at night. Blue light during the day is actually beneficial, as it helps to regulate your body’s natural circadian rhythm.

How to Avoid?

Take regular breaks from your computer screen – at least 10 minutes every hour. If you’re having trouble remembering, set yourself a timer! Additionally, you can install blue light filter apps to your screen to minimize its effect.

3. Slips, Trips and Falls

The most common causes of office falls include:

  • Slipping on wet floors
  • Reaching for something while sitting in an unstable chair
  • Tripping over loose carpeting, electrical cords, an open file drawer, or objects in walkways
  • Using a chair instead of a ladder
  • Poor lighting/visibility

Sure, you can handle a fall when you’re 16 – but not so much when you’re 40!

How to Avoid?

Be mindful of your footing – look for spills, clutter, and other obstacles when you’re walking around your office. Keep walkways clear, use a ladder instead of chairs or stools, and make sure your office is properly lit.

4. Back Injuries

Back injuries are usually caused by improper lifting techniques or bad posture.

As shown in an NCBI-published study, inactivity can lead to back pain. The problem worsens when you’re inactive in a poor working position.

How to Avoid?

Investing in ergonomic furniture and equipment such as adjustable chairs, standing desks, and lumbar support can reduce the risk of back pain. If you’re office doesn’t have this, talk to management about getting it.

5. Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSD)

MSDs are any kind of disorder or injury that affects the muscles, tendons, ligaments and nerves. It is caused by repetitive motion or exertion of force.

Common MSDs include sprains, strains, tendinitis, carpal tunnel syndrome and trigger finger.

How to Avoid?

Frequent breaks between tasks can help alleviate the effects of repetitive motion, and stretching before and after a task can also help protect your muscles. Additionally, using the proper body mechanics when lifting heavy items is important – use your legs and core, not your back!

That’s it – if you follow the tips above, you can reduce the risk of injury and make sure that your workdays are pain-free. Stay safe!

How to Fix Bad Posture Caused by Working From Home (or the Office)

How to fix bad posture caused by working from home (or the Office)

When it comes to bad posture, we’re all guilty as charged. We slump and slouch our way through the day like an army of Quasimodos – setting ourselves up for a world of unhealthy hurtin’ with unattractive results if not taken care of.

Bad posture is proven to decrease your range of motion and it opens you up for injury.

So listen up folks: no more folding in half at your desks!

No more “text neck!”

We want to make your posture fix quick and easy for you. No complicated stretches or esoteric gym equipment.

1. Hanging

While the dead hang looks like another low-effort, waste of time, it’s one of the most vital moves for good posture.

Hanging decompresses your spine which decreases your risk of a back injury. The second you hang out for the first time you’ll likely feel that decompressing feeling in your back. It’s like a healthy back crack, and who doesn’t like back cracks?

Furthermore, they strengthen your core, which makes it easier for you to stabilize your body. They also increase grip strength. Some studies show weak grip strength may be a risk factor for decreased mobility later in life.

We said “no esoteric gym equipment,” but a pull-up bar is a staple for good posture.

2. Face Pulls

Face pulls are a fantastic exercise for externally rotating our slumped shoulders. It pulls those shoulders back and offers instant catharsis! The next time you head to the gym grab the tricep rope pulldown and anchor it high to a machine.

Then pull the rope back while pointing your thumbs out and contracting your back.

The rear deltoids are the primary muscles targeted here and tend to be the most underdeveloped head of the delt (between the middle and front). This is because we do more push moves in our day-to-day than pull.

Incorporate the face pull and your shoulders will get healthier in less than a week.

No gym membership?

Those without gym memberships can still perform the face pull. Simply grab a pair of five-pound (or less) dumbbells and lay down in a superman position.

Extend the dumbbells out and pull them in while contracting your back.

Now you’re superman.

3. Every 30 Minutes — Get up and walk

Speaking as a full-time journalist this is very, very hard to do. Especially when I’m in a flow state — like right now — I don’t ever want to get up. I’d rather keep mashing away at these keys.

Stop it. It’s not worth your bad posture.

In an interview with Men’s Health, physical therapist and strength coach Eric Oetter explains the immediate benefits:

“Your tissue is like a rubber band. Sitting applies constant tension, and the rubber band stretches out some,” he says. “Standing up hits reset to help counteract some of the negative effects of sitting.”

Set a timer on your phone if you REALLY want to hold yourself accountable.

4. Bands

Like hanging on the pull-up bar, once you use bands you will never go back.

You can find elastic fitness bands at Five-Bellow — if they have one near you — or at a Walmart/Target. Or Amazon.

Once you buy one you’re going to raise the band above your head with your hands somewhere near the ends. Then you want to pull it down and back with your thumbs out (they should be going behind you).

It’s like you’re doing a face pull but with nothing attached.

You can also loosen your shoulders with bands by holding them overhand and bringing them up over your head and down to your back. Imagine starting your hands at your sides and doing a giant circle backward.

This really feels like it scraps the rust off of my shoulders.

Furthermore, you can pretty much work every muscle group with bands. I use mine to stretch my IT band for example.


Fixing your posture is as easy as 1,2,3…4. This equipment is reusable for years — maybe even a lifetime if you take good care of it.

I still have the original resistance band I purchased three years ago and use it to warm up my shoulders on an upper-body day. Additionally, my five-year-old pull-up bar is falling apart but it’s still good for hanging or banging out a quick one or two chin-ups.

If you implement these four postural strategies you’ll stop feeling slouched over and start to feel like you can pull back your body and stand tall among the best.