Work injuries aren’t always caused by major events like falls, explosions or fires. Sometimes even simple everyday actions like reaching for a tool can have serious consequences. Two injuries commonly associated with the simple act of reaching are Rotator Cuff Tendonitis and Rotator Cuff Tearing.
The Rotator Cuff is a group of muscles and tendons that stabilize the shoulder. Rotator Cuff injuries can occur when tendons are over-stretched or over-worked, or when the tendons bump or rub against a bone in the shoulder.
Rotator cuff injuries can cause pain in the shoulder and upper arm and can be easily diagnosed by a doctor. Without proper treatment the symptoms can go on for years, and usually get worse over time.
To avoid a Rotator Cuff injury, make sure your work station is arranged so that everything is well within reach. Workplace supervisors should remind workers during regular safety meetings that reaching too far can be dangerous, especially when done repeatedly.
Watch out for over-reaching to protect your shoulders, and remember that if you experience a rotator cuff injury at work, you are entitled to workers’ compensation for your treatment.