For chronic pain sufferers, it can be extremely difficult to cope at work. For tips on how to improve your working life, read our blog.
At some point in life, everyone has suffered with pain, whether it be backache or extremely bad toothache. For chronic pain sufferers, the pain is constant, making everyday life a struggle – especially for those who continue to work despite their painful symptoms which. Although it is difficult to cope with chronic pain while working, it’s not impossible. In this blog, we share our top tips on how to improve your working life and get your employer on side to be more accommodating.
Sitting or standing in the same position for a set period of time can worsen pain and, as a law firm with expertise in handling chronic pain compensation claims, we know all too well how uncomfortable it can be to remain seated for a long period of time. To relieve pain and improve symptoms, we recommend getting up and moving around where possible.
If your job is particularly stressful, it can worsen your pain and you may find yourself struggling to cope. In order to reduce stress, you must identify what it is that’s making you stressed. It could be that your working days are too long or that you need some time to wind down. If this is the case, you could discuss things with your boss to potentially reduce your hours or take part in yoga to have some time for yourself.
If your employer is aware of your chronic pain condition but doesn’t fully understand it, take some time out to educate them. If you don’t have the backing of your manager, you’re going to feel alone and unsupported. Plus, your employer isn’t going to know what your limitations and abilities are if you don’t tell them. After having ‘the chat’, you’re bound to feel better knowing that someone else understands what you’re going through. What have you got to lose?
If your job requires a lot of travel, speak to your employer to see if this can be reduced; it’s no secret that those with chronic pain syndrome don’t make the best world travellers. Planes in particular are a big no no for chronic pain sufferers as the change in pressure can be a severe symptom trigger. Plus, with everyone in such close proximity of one another, illnesses can spread quickly.
Tweak your workspace
For most people, work is like a second home as it’s one of the places we spend most of our time. If you have your own desk at work, make it comfortable by preparing for flare-ups. If you suffer with chronic pain and know that the temperature affects you and your symptoms, be prepared and have a jacket on-hand for the times when you get cold. Also, make your space unique to you by adding one or two photographs of your loved ones to make it more homely and less daunting.
Chronic pain can be better managed when you have a routine. This includes getting enough sleep, eating well, taking the appropriate medication that may have been provided by your GP and possibly taking some time to participate in light exercise. If possible, aim to get into work at the same time everyday so your body adjusts and becomes comfortable with the schedule that you’ve set.
Due to our experience in handling chronic pain compensation claims, we know a thing or two about the condition, however nobody knows more than your GP. If things are getting really tough, go and see your GP. More often than not, they will be able to offer valuable advice, and may have a few ideas of their own to improve your working life. Perhaps sessions with an occupational therapist would make on-the-job pain management more manageable.
Remaining in work while suffering with chronic pain syndrome works for some but not others – the choice is completely up to you. If you are determined to continue working, we hope you find the tips outlined in this blog helpful. Working with chronic pain is not an impossibility and with the right support and care, it can be something that career lovers continue to enjoy.
If you suffer with the condition as a result of an accident or injury, you could be entitled to chronic pain compensation. To find out more about whether or not you have a claim, get in touch with our expert team.