The COVID-19 pandemic has completely swept the nation with no end currently in sight. On top of causing virus-related health issues, the novel Coronavirus has also triggered stress-related injuries within the health care industry. Stress injuries can alter a health care worker’s ability to work and maintain safety. It is imperative that health care workers stay healthy during this pandemic to continue to help those who are sick and to preserve their own safety. According to a Woodward Professor of Nursing, the following tips help health care workers recognize the different types of stress injuries:
- Ready: This is the least concerning form of stress illness since the worker still has effective functioning and a healthy well-being. The features of this category include staying in control, staying calm and steady, and getting your job done in an efficient manner.
- Reacting: This is slightly more serious and includes mild distress or loss of function. The features of this category include feeling anxious, irritability, worrying too often, and poor sleep habits.
- Injured: A more severe form of illness, this injury causes persistent distress or loss of function. These injuries include trauma, fatigue, and grief. Presented features are loss of control, lack of sleep, panic, rage, and shame.
- III: the most serious form of stress illness, this leads to clinical mental disorders and unhealed stress injuries, including post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, anxiety, and substance abuse.
What Steps Can Health Care Workers Take?
It is important that health care workers follow safety steps to avoid workplace accidents and injuries, or illnesses, including:
- Getting enough sleep: Sleep is important, it maintains your health and lifestyle. Sleep helps increase your mental and physical well-being and daily performance. Adults should be getting seven to eight hours of sleep each night to increase focus and energy levels. Without proper sleep, the more mistakes you will make, which puts you and others at risk for injuries and death. Always obtain enough sleep to avoid problems due to fatigue.
- Keeping your body and mind healthy: Taking care of yourself is especially important if you work in a high-stress job. To help prevent stress injuries, do something that benefits your body and mind, such as going to the gym, taking up yoga, writing, or working on a puzzle. Doing activities can help flush out the anxiety that may be building inside your body and promote a sense of calm in an individual.
- Connecting with others: People yearn for connections with other people and want to have peers and coworkers that are trustworthy. Having a good support system can help you reduce anxiety and keep you alert when you are acting differently due to stress at work. Talk to these people and do not be afraid to share the difficulties you may be experiencing as a health care worker. It is okay to ask for help, especially during this difficult time.
Sometimes, health care workers can become injured due to no fault of their own. If you are an injured worker, it is important to talk to a Workers’ Compensation lawyer who can help you file a Workers’ Compensation claim.
Wilmington Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at McCann Dillon Jaffe & Lamb, LLC Advocate on the Behalf of Health Care Workers
If you have been struggling at work due to a stress-related injury, there are ways to receive help. Our Wilmington Workers’ Compensation lawyers at McCann Dillon Jaffe & Lamb, LLC understand the stress that this pandemic is putting on health care workers, and we can help workers receive the compensation they deserve. Contact us online or call us at 302-888-1221 for a free consultation. Located in Wilmington, Delaware, we serve clients throughout the state, including Dover, Newark, and Middletown.