Employers are responsible for ensuring worker health and safety on the job. While employers can control how employees are trained and whether they have proper safety equipment, there are other safety factors that are difficult to monitor. Employees must often undergo drug and alcohol testing to ensure they do not pose a risk to themselves or others. Recent studies have shown that workers may face additional risks if they suffer from sleep problems or take sleep medications.
According to reports, 13 in 100 workplace injuries may be related to poor sleep or fatigue. Our Charleston workers’ compensation attorneys are dedicated to helping protect the victims of work-related injuries and to prevent future injuries in the workplace.
Researchers have found that there are a number of different causes of poor sleep, including insomnia, sleep apnea, or restless leg syndrome. In addition to leaving you tired, poor sleep habits can also be related to obesity and diabetes. In a number of recent studies, sleep deprivation has been known to cause accidents. It is no surprise that fatigue and a lack of sleep can also result in workplace accidents and injury.
Using a range of data collected from interviews, questionnaires, and medical reports, a recent study found that workplace injuries were more likely when involving people who had sleep difficulties. Analysts of the data also found a relationship between those who had sleep problems and those who suffered from work-related injuries. The contract was striking: people with sleep problems were 60 percent more likely to suffer an injury with work.
In addition to poor sleep, researchers attribute a number of these accidents to the use of sleep aid medications. Individuals who were taking an over-the-counter or prescription medication for sleep problems were the most likely to suffer a work-related injury. Those in jobs that are highly physical, including construction, farming, mining or other industries, were more likely to suffer severe injuries caused by sleep deprivation.
Symptoms of sleep deprivation may result in a feeling of grogginess and the inability to focus on tasks. Workers could forget safety equipment or miss an important step that could result in serious accidents or injury. Those responsible for operating heavy machinery could pose a significant risk to themselves or others when on the job. Any symptoms of sleep deprivation could impact job performance and ultimately increase the risk of work-related injury.
Sleeping problems can impact mood, response time, and overall well-being. If you suffer from insomnia or other sleep problems, you should consult with a doctor to protect your health and well-being. Be careful about taking any medications that could impact your ability to function on the job. Though we all have an occasional restless night, you should seek medical attention if you have regular issues with sleeping. Failing to get adequate sleep could impact your job performance and increase your risk of injuries.
In the event of a workplace accident, any victim of injury is entitled to compensation, regardless of who was at fault or what caused the accident. Even if you suffered from a sleep-related injury, you are entitled to workers’ compensation.
If you or someone you love has suffered work injury in North or South Carolina, contact the Lee Law Offices at 1-800-887-1965 for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your case.
More Blog Entries:
New OSHA Rule for Crane and Derrick Workers, North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Blog, May 27, 2013
New Legislation Aims to Bolster OSHA Role in Worker Safety, North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Blog, May 25, 2013