Making the transition from taking time off work to recover from an injury and heading back into work can be a daunting prospect. There are so many things to consider when it comes to preparing yourself physically and mentally for your return to work. If you are considering going back to work after an injury, make sure you follow these tips to make the process as smooth as possible.
1. Don’t rush your recovery
This is easier said than done, especially if your financial well being is at stake. You should carefully consider what the doctors have told you and how this will affect your health in the long run. Taking just a few extra days could mean that your return to work will be permanent instead of rushing the process and setting yourself back. If your doctor has not cleared you to return, do not do so.
2. Keep your disability lawyer up to date
You should make sure that you keep your lawyer informed on your progress so that they can advise you on what you need to do at every stage of the process. If you have been ordered to return to work, or you are not happy with the duties assigned to you upon your return you should speak with your lawyer so that you can make the changes you need in the right way.
3. Follow your restrictions
If you have been told that you should only do light duty, then you need to pay attention to those instructions. It is wise to keep a printed copy of the restrictions with you at work so that you can show this to your superiors at all times. This will prevent you from overdoing it and make it clear to your boss and your colleagues that you are not trying to avoid work and that you’re looking after your health.
4. Document everything
Even if you don’t think that you will need to refer back to your notes as your employer is being fair to you, it is very important that you document everything. If you notice any actions on the part of your employer which may constitute discrimination or punishment for your light-duty restrictions or injury, you will want to document this.
You will need specifics such as time, date and what was said or done. If you are asked to exceed your light-duty restrictions, you will want to document this. Once you have this in writing you can give this information to your disability lawyer so that they will be able to take the appropriate action and advise you on next steps.
5. Rest as much as you can
When you are finished with your first day back on the job you will probably feel really tired and in need of rest. You should not feel bad about this at all. Rest as much as you need and clear your schedule. Even if you are feeling okay after your first day back it takes time to get back into the swing of things.
6. If you get injured again, report it right away
You don’t want to get injured again if you can avoid it. What you should make sure is that if you are injured again you treat it just as you did the first time. Call your disability lawyer and document everything. You may be working in an unsafe environment so you will want to consider reporting anything that seems out of place, or any standards that are not being met.