If you’ve sustained an injury at work, you are entitled to worker’s compensation benefits, no matter your age.
The age of retirement can be different for a lot of people. But even if most Americans dream to hand in their punch cards and move to sunnier lands as soon as possible, reality shows that’s not the case for many American workers.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that around 40% of people aged 55 and older were employed or actively looking for work in 2014. The bureau estimates this number will significantly increase through 2024, even more so than any other age group.
But when your workforce is aging, companies and employers must take the necessary precautions to make sure they create a safe environment for workers over 55. Here are 4 common types of work injuries among senior workers.
Sprains, Strains, and Tears
According to a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics from 2005, older workers (over 55) are highly at risk of sustaining a sprain, strain or tear at their place of employment. Interestingly, these types of injuries are also very common among all other age groups as well.
These injuries typically result in environments where the workers must physically handle cargo or equipment. Experts believe they are most likely due to improper safety regulations in the workplace or human mistakes.
As a worker gets older, it seems they are more and more likely to suffer a fracture at work. People tend to lose bone density when they age, as calcium and minerals are harder to extract from natural sources, leaving the bones a lot weaker. As a result, the risk of fractures increases.
While falls may not account for a lot of total senior injuries according to the BLS, they do account for about 17% of senior worker fatalities. Falls often lead to intracranial and external injuries and require a lot of time to heal. For an older worker, it may put too much strain on the body, resulting in fatalities.
Finally, working longer in the same environment makes a worker more likely to develop a workplace illness, especially in jobs that expose the worker to chemicals, or one that is physically demanding.
These injuries may not be created by a single event, like in the case of a fracture or sprain. Instead, they progress slowly, and a lot of the time the worker is not even aware they get sick until the symptoms get more difficult to manage. These types of injuries can be:
- Pulmonary issues
- Muscle weakness
- Posture or skeletal problems
Talk to an Experienced Work Comp Lawyer
If you’ve sustained an injury at work, you do not have to pay for your treatment yourself. Legally, you are entitled to worker’s compensation benefits, no matter your age. At the Law Office of James M. Hoffmann, our Missouri Workers’ Compensation Attorneys can provide you with the necessary information to make the right choices so that you can receive the best medical care, benefits, and income.