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IL injury lawyerEven when safety procedures are followed, accidents can and do occur at workplaces. In some cases, an employee may suffer minor injuries while others may sustain serious and long-lasting injuries. If you are hurt on the job in Illinois and receives workers’ compensation benefits, your employer may offer you light-duty work. This may mean doing a job that is less physically or mentally challenging than the duties required in your full-time job position. For instance, a light-duty job may require working fewer hours per shift, working on the computer, or one that involves moving products that are under a certain weight. It is important to understand the details and how this might impact your workers’ comp claim before accepting the light-duty job offer.

Doctor Recommendations in Workers’ Comp Cases

As in other states, in Illinois, most employers are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance. This is in the event that a work-related illness or injury occurs, and it gives the employee benefits regardless of who is at fault for the illness or injury. It is important to note, however, that workers’ compensation benefits are not taxable income to the employee. Under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act, financial relief is provided to an employee if he or she sustains an injury at work, including pre-existing conditions that are aggravated by his or her job and work-related injuries that occur outside of the workplace.

In certain cases, a doctor recommended by your employer might state that you are capable of performing light-duty work. However, if you see your regular doctor, he or she might think that you cannot. Unfortunately, many injured employees feel pressured and push themselves to return to work too fast, and risk sustaining further injury.

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IL accident lawyerUnfortunately, workplace accidents and injuries happen on a daily basis throughout the United States. Employees who are injured on the job will often have a unique set of circumstances depending on their line of work. Everyone’s body is different, and that means recovery timelines are not always the same. Similar to an athlete’s injury, medical professionals usually recommend physical therapy to treat a work injury. If you need any type of therapy or treatment after suffering a work injury, workers’ comp should cover the expense as long as it is ordered by a physician. In most situations, a person must eventually return to work to support his or her family. That is why it is important for Illinois workers to understand their options for seeking workers’ compensation to alleviate some of the financial burdens due to lost wages or rehabilitation costs after an injury at work.

Physical Therapy

Healthcare professionals can assist with recovery with the ultimate goal of getting an injured person back to work. For example, a physical therapist will develop a treatment plan that is specifically targeted to an injury or body part. Physical therapy is considered a holistic treatment that often combines multiple methods for recovery. This form of rehabilitation is often used after a worker suffers a broken arm or leg. It can also be used for repetitive injuries, such as carpal tunnel syndrome or back/neck pain from sitting at the computer for long periods of time.

Treatment may include a combination of stretching, exercises, ultrasound techniques, hot and cold treatment, aquatic exercises, and joint mobilization. Physical therapy may also involve hands-on joint and soft tissue massage and mobilization. The therapist may press and knead the soft tissue as a way to relieve pain and encourage blood flow. He or she can stretch joints and muscles to increase flexibility and range of motion. Physical therapists might also instruct a patient to use specialized equipment or bikes and treadmills.

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IL injury lawyerThere are certain types of occupations that pose potential risks to workers compared to other jobs. For instance, an office worker likely spends most of his or her time sitting at a desk on the computer. On the other hand, a construction worker is typically at a building site while a factory worker is in a warehouse. In some of these latter occupations, an employee may be exposed to toxic chemicals. Although most companies are required to adhere to safety regulations including providing proper protective gear and equipment, accidents can still occur. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 13 million Americans are exposed to chemicals at work that can be absorbed through the skin. Luckily, under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act, employees are protected for injuries sustained at work, including pre-existing conditions that are aggravated by the job duties as well as work-related injuries that are sustained outside of the workplace.

Workplace Hazards

Construction zones and factories are known to have paint, concrete mix, wood dust, cleaning products, and other hazardous materials that workers come in contact with on a regular basis. Older homes or buildings also may have asbestos or lead paint. Typically, the lead in paint and the asbestos in ceiling or walls are not hazardous. However, when these structures are renovated, toxins can be released into the environment, posing a danger to residents or workers. Some of the more common toxic chemicals that might be present in a work environment include but are not limited to the following:

  • Asbestos
  • Ammonia
  • Chloroform
  • Lead
  • Mercury
  • Iodine
  • Formaldehyde
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Uranium

Physical Consequences

Certain chemicals and fumes can cause serious bodily harm to workers if they are exposed. The duration and the amount of exposure may impact the severity of the injury, resulting in a variety of short- and long-term health conditions that can lead to life-threatening occupational diseases or specific types of cancer. Hazardous materials can be inhaled through the nose or mouth, or even through the skin. A few of the major physical ailments that can be caused by toxic substances include:

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IL work injury lawyerThere are many different occupations throughout the United States in various types of industries. Some jobs are inherently more dangerous than others. For example, a construction worker or warehouse employee may be exposed to certain hazardous conditions in the field, while a librarian most likely does not encounter dangers in a typical workday. Accidents can happen, and depending on the circumstances, they can result in minor to serious injuries. In some cases, a victim may require surgery or significant rehabilitation to recover. Thankfully, employees in Illinois can seek relief from their employer through a workers’ compensation claim.

The Road to Recovery Can Be Long

Many injuries to the body can require physical rehabilitation. If an injury or medical condition suffered on the job has limited a person’s ability to function on a daily basis, he or she may need physical therapy. This type of therapy can relieve pain, restore range of motion, and improve muscle tone, strength, endurance, and balance. By using a combination of heat and cold, ultrasound, laser therapy, exercise, and more, an individual may gain full recovery of his or her injured body part. Studies have shown that the sooner a victim starts physical therapy, the better the outcome.

Some of the most common workplace accidents can result in the following types of injuries that may require rehab to mend:

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IL disability attorneyThere are numerous occupations that involve physical labor. For some employees, this may involve lifting or moving heavy objects. Other jobs may not involve using the whole body, but rather require repetitive motion of certain body parts. Years of continuously using the same muscles and joints can lead to problems. Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition that causes tingling, numbness, and weakness in the hand. It is also known as median nerve compression. Even employees who work in different industries may still suffer from this type of work injury. In some cases, carpal tunnel syndrome can lead to a workers’ compensation claim.

Signs and Symptoms

The median nerve runs the length of a person’s arm. Carpal tunnel syndrome occurs when pressure on that nerve goes through a passage in the wrist called the carpal tunnel and ends in the hand. The median controls feeling and movement of the thumb and all the fingers except the pinky.

One of the first symptoms that a person who has carpal tunnel syndrome may experience is the feeling that his or her hand has “fallen asleep.” This numbing sensation can go all the way up the arm. In some cases, an individual may have flare-ups when holding that requires the wrist to bend, such as holding a book or steering wheel. Below are possible signs that someone might have this syndrome:

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