For most people, working hard is an essential aspect of life, and this sometimes put them at risk. There are many jobs that can put employees in circumstances that increase the likelihood of injury. More so, employers have the role of reducing the likelihood of injury for various reasons. For instance, it can help to reduce issues such as reduced work productivity and Corporate Social Responsibly issues. Foot injuries are perhaps the most common incidents in the contemporary workplace, regardless of the job. The study also showed that the side effects of such injuries are several. The main ones included decreased productivity, missed work days, increased expenditures and more.
Statistics on Foot Injury
Various studies have been done to evaluate the occurrence of foot injuries on the job. Gaining insight into these statistics is important in understanding the problem.
- A recent study by the Bureau of Labor Statistics showed that there were 52,000 cases of foot injuries.
- A recent Bureau of Labor study showed that three-quarters of injuries occurred due to lack of work compliance
- The National Council on Compensation Insurance also states that the average cost associated with lost work days due to foot injuries is $9,000
- Eighty percent of all footwear complications occur due to objects that do not weigh more than 30 pounds
Why is Foot Comfort Important?
Keeping the feet comfortable, especially in demanding work conditions is crucial. There are two major classifications of work injury. They include:
- The first category- these are punctures, sprains, lacerations and more. The first category often leads to severe injuries and requires medical treatment.
- The second category- come up from trips, falls and slips. Usually, the latter category of injuries rarely leads to injury.
However, failing to adhere to workplace safety regulations increases their occurrence. While these are the major categories of injuries, they are not exhaustive of all foot problems. Other conditions such as ingrown toenails, calluses, and other physical challenges are also leading causes of foot injuries. Work challenges such as fatigue usually set up the worker for more foot injuries. More so, a worker who suffers from pain is less productive and less likely to meet performance milestones.
Tips for Preventing Foot Injury on the Job
Using the appropriate footwear- using the proper work gear is crucial in preventing foot injuries. Usually, the foot injuries come about as a result of negligence on the part of the workers. Failing to adhere to company regulations with regards to workgear is a severe issue. More so, using sturdy footwear that protects your toes, is crucial for preventing such forms of injury. Proper footwear is not only useful for foot comfort but the overall worker’s well-being. Using the incorrect footwear can increase existing foot complications. Never wear soft work shoes without protection unless your workplace doesn’t have a risk of heavy objects falling on your feet. Unfortunately, the tradeoff for being fashionable sometimes takes precedence over using the correct footwear. The most common footwear tips for work include:
Developing the appropriate job design- ensuring that employees receive the appropriate work roles is also important. An employee fit for physical jobs should meet the standard safety requirements for the given professional industry. Failing to assign employees the proper work tasks can lead to issues such as injury, and even lawsuits. Aching, flat or tired feet are common among workers who spend most of their working time standing. The primary goal of developing a good job design is to reduce the issues associated with fixed positions of work. The ideal job design includes various tasks that require the individual to shift body positions and to work the muscles. Job enlargement and rotation are all crucial techniques in reducing issues of foot injuries.
Providing a safe working environment- there are various state and federal regulations that regulate work conditions, and environments. Companies that do not meet these standards are often prone to punishments such as fines and more. As such, any savvy organization must provide employees with a safe working environment. The common standards include safety warnings, provision of special workgear, safety training and more. Standing or working on a hard, unyielding surface can cause discomfort for employees. Using floor materials such as carpeting, rubber or wood provides work flexibility and is gentler on the feet of your workers. Where the durable floors are not applicable, using footwear with thick soles can reduce the discomfort. The use of mats requires caution because improper installation can lead to high numbers of slipping accidents.
Safety Training- safety training programs are an excellent way to create awareness about safety in the organization. The ideal safety training is comprehensive and interactive enough for the employees. More so, the safety training should relate to the industry standards and company culture as well. Through this approach, the organization can make a lasting impression in regards to safety training programs. The ideal training program for workplace safety consists of various programs. The common ones include the use of pamphlets, tutorials, face to face training, interactive programs and more. The ideal awareness program also comes with some form of incentive to encourage employees to embrace the concepts of the training.
Treatment of Foot Injuries
In most cases, the treatment for foot injuries usually differs significantly and in relation to the injury. Usually, most of the sprain and strains can be treated using DIY techniques, and proper foot care. The common DIY treatment technique involves the use of rest, ice and compression of the affected area. Moreover, the sever cases of foot injury might require medical attention or solutions such as a cast. Any foot injury does not heal within the expected time might need professional medical help. It is important that you consult with a medical health expert, mainly if the foot injury affects your typical day to day activities.
Providing a safe working environment for any organization that wants to improve employee productivity and company performance. Foot injuries are a leading cause of decreased employee productivity, and safety issues today. Preventing foot injury requires a collaborative approach between employees and their staff. Employees have the role of providing a safe workplace environment. More importantly, employees have the role of adhering to workplace regulations and using the appropriate footwear. Through this approach, the occurrences of foot injury can decrease on the job will drop significantly.