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Recovery & work

Recovering while at work is the healthiest option for most people with work-related injuries. Working is good for physical and mental health, and often helps speed healing. Making safe, sustainable work arrangements for recovering workers takes teamwork. Workers, employers, and health care providers all have important contributions to make.

Recovery at work is good medicine

Many people believe that being away from work after an injury decreases stress and allows healing. But medical evidence proves that recovering at work is better for most workers.

This is especially true for those with physical injuries such as strains and sprains. Recovering at work also helps a person's mental health and well being.

Focus on what someone can do

For many people, recovering at work means doing different tasks or working a different schedule. Focusing on what someone can do, rather than what he or she can't do, makes it easier to decide on alternative duties. For example, someone with an injured shoulder can still perform useful and safe work in the office by answering phones.

Recovery on the job

People who stay on the job, doing modified work, have faster recoveries. They also avoid the unnecessary consequences that develop when they are away from employment. Studies show that the longer people are off work, the less likely they are to return in any capacity.

Of course, some people do need a brief period of recovery away from work. They may have serious injuries requiring hospitalization or frequent medical treatments. Even in these cases, returning to some work as soon as appropriate helps with recovery and the person's overall health.

A team approach to recovery

Recovery at work is a collaborative process between people who have been injured at work, employers, and health care providers. Following a "work as therapy" approach helps people recover faster and return to work and normal life sooner.

Using this approach, the worker and employer develop the recover-at-work plan while health care providers offer advice on the worker's medical condition. Our staff can also help by sharing what has been successful in other work settings.