How Chronic Pain Affects Your Ability to Work

Accident victims suffer from countless injuries that can result in chronic pain, or pain lasting longer than 12 weeks. With the bills piling up, many people with chronic pain have no choice but to go back to work. The ongoing physical impairment can make chronic pain and work almost unbearable.

Difficulties Caused By Chronic Pain

Suffering from chronic pain at the workplace can make everyday tasks difficult. Chronic pain causes a number of physical and psychological limitations that can affect work performance.

Physical Limitations

Chronic pain can limit a person’s mobility and strength, making it difficult for them to sit, stand, and lift objects in the workplace. Repetitive activities, such as typing, may be especially challenging for those with nonstop pain.

Chronic pain can also affect productivity by causing the following.

  • Fatigue
  • Loss of appetite
  • Insomnia

Psychological Limitations

Chronic pain is not just physical pain. Many people who suffer chronic pain also suffer with depression and other psychological issues. Depression in particular can exacerbate their physical pain and make treatment more complicated. Those suffering with chronic pain may feel tense and stressed, and experience mood changes and irritability in the workplace.

Work-Related Damages Caused by Chronic Pain

If you suffer serious injuries in an accident, you may not be able to go back to work immediately after the crash. Once you return to work, chronic pain may prevent you from working at the same level as you did before the accident. As a result, you may experience the following negative consequences.

Lost Wages

Chronic pain may keep you out of work for weeks or months after your accident. Lost wages refer to the wages you would have earned from the time of the accident to the time you return to work.

Lost Earning Capacity

At the outset of an accident, you can use a pain and suffering calculator to determine your noneconomic damages. For future use, however, your lawyer will need to calculate any negative losses by using these factors:

  • Past earnings
  • Age
  • Occupation
  • Life expectancy

Lost Benefits

Many accident victims are able to take sick leave or paid vacation for the time missed. If you are able to do this, while you may not have lost income directly, you could have used that time off for something else. Therefore, any benefits you lost as a result of the accident may be recoverable. 

Lost Work Opportunities

If you have been out of work because of accident-related injuries, you may also lose workplace opportunities. For example, you may have missed out on a promotion or raise in wages due to your absence. 

Calculating Damages for Personal Injury Suit

Some injuries will heal shortly after your accident. Other injuries will lead to chronic pain which may last you a lifetime. Many accident victims never make a full recovery, and as a result, should expect to lose future income. When calculating damages for a personal injury suit, you will need to account for the effects of your injuries as well as your chronic pain. You can prove your loss of future earnings by providing expert testimony, medical reports detailing your chances of recovery, and an accurate picture of the income you likely would have earned if there was no accident.

Discussing long-term injuries and chronic pain with your attorney is essential to making sure you recover the compensation you deserve. Call Bressman Law for counsel on chronic pain and work (877) 538-1116.