RSI stands for repetitive strain injury. This is a very common injury that is caused by overusing hands to perform a task repetitively. Office workers will be well aware of this injury as it is caused by repeatedly clicking, writing or typing. People who use computers on a daily basis are at a huge risk of picking up this injury. A person who suffers from RSI may suffer swelling, numbness, weakness and pain in their fingers. RSI mainly affects your arms and hands as the muscles, nerves and tendons become overworked. Let’s take a detailed look at the various elements of repetitive strain injury and how it can be avoided in the workplace.
Types of Repetitive Strain Injury
There are two main types of RSI. The first type of this injury is caused by repeatedly using your hands to perform tasks. This type of repetitive strain injury is recognised by swelling and inflammation of the muscles and tendons. You might also experience pain and compression in the wrist. The second type of repetitive strain injury has no measurable signs or symptoms. You only experience pain in your hands and arms. Doctors recognise this type of RSI by testing the patients for the first type. When the symptoms of the first type don’t apply, the second type of RSI is confirmed. Visit a doctor right away if you have any of these symptoms.
How it is caused
Repetitive strain injury isn’t only limited to computer users. People who perform manual work can also pick up this injury. The risks of RSI increase if you are regularly lifting heavy objects, performing tasks without taking breaks, working continuously in cold weather conditions and performing activities whilst sitting in an awkward position. It is recommended that workers regularly take breaks during work to prevent this injury.
There are a lot of other factors that can affect your wrists. If you are not taking up a correct writing position then chances are that you will suffer from pain after a while. You might need to change your keyboard if it is affecting your writing position. You should always use a keyboard from a reliable manufacturer that can be adjusted. You should also get a comfortable chair that will not compromise your natural wrist movement.
How can RSI be prevented?
RSI can be prevented by just taking a few basic steps. A lot of employers carry out workplace assessments regularly to ensure that injuries like RSI are avoided. Anyone who is suffering from RSI needs to stop performing the task that caused the injury in the first place. After that you can use ice packs to ease the pain; aspirin and painkillers can also help reduce pain. You can also consult a physiotherapist to help with the posture and positioning of your body.
Anyone who has picked up RSI at the workplace should immediately contact Accident Advice Helpline and get help. Any workplace injury that was caused by the employer should be legally compensated. File your claim with us on a no win no fee basis and be confident that we will do our utmost to ensure that you are fairly compensated. To discuss your claim with a member of our expert team dial 0800 689 0500 now.