Understanding the psychological impact of a workplace injury

Understanding the psychological impact of a workplace injury

On Behalf of | Jan 14, 2021 | Workplace Injuries

When people suffer a workplace injury in Nebraska, they may spend considerable time stressing about how long they will need to take time off of work to recover. What many people do not understand is that the psychological impact of a work injury can last much longer than any physical injury. 

Even if injured workers reach a point in recovery where they receive clearance to return to work, the toll of a traumatic experience on both mental and emotional health could affect them for the remainder of their life. 

Coping with trauma

Workers’ compensation benefits help to alleviate some of the financial burden for injured workers. Funds can provide support for ongoing medical needs, rehabilitation services and other aspects of recovery. However, according to the PMC Insurance Group, workers’ compensation does not solve all of the problems that an injured worker may face. After a life-changing accident, injured workers and their families face significant difficulties including the following: 

  • Side effects of medications 
  • Adjustments to family roles 
  • Added stress of caring for an injured person 
  • Depression 
  • Chronic pain 

In cases of severe injury, some people can never return to work and face a future completely opposite of what they imagined. While workers’ compensation aims to provide temporary financial help, it can in no way account for the psychological impact that injured workers and their families must handle. 

Looking to the future

When an injured worker returns home, family members often step into caretaker roles. This adjustment can put strain on relationships and create added tension. Balancing the day-to-day needs of an injured person along with the other responsibilities of life may leave caretakers feeling inadequate and overwhelmed. 

Families may consider therapy to help them learn how to manage their newfound challenges. The Laborers’ Health and Safety Fund of North America suggests the best way to prevent this type of hardship for injured workers and their families is to prevent workplace accidents from happening at all.