Traumatic injuries and experiences on the job can leave workers struggling with lasting, painful conditions that are not necessarily visible to others. For instance, a person can develop symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in relation to their job, and in some cases, they can be eligible for worker’s compensation benefits.
That said, the connection between PTSD and work is not always as direct as other work-related conditions. It can be easy to see that a person broke their leg after a fall in the workplace, but PTSD can be more complicated.
Causes of PTSD on the job
Some of the experiences that can trigger PTSD symptoms related to work include:
- Witnessing a traumatic event, like a fatality
- Developing a chronic condition after a work accident
- Suffering injuries through military service
- Being put in a dangerous situation
- Getting robbed or assaulted
These events can leave people struggling with symptoms of PTSD like debilitating anxiety, flashbacks, inability to sleep and negative changes in their mood and thinking.
Under these circumstances, this mental health condition can be a work-related illness. A person can be eligible to receive compensation to cover medical expenses and a portion of their lost wages. This financial support can make it easier for a worker to focus on getting help.
Who is at risk?
Every worker is at some risk of experiencing a traumatic event on the job, but some are far more likely to than others. We often see people with work-related PTSD if they are:
- First responders
- Law enforcement officers
- Medical workers
- Retail workers
- Workers in hazardous industries
People in these occupations are more likely to witness a traumatic event or suffer a catastrophic injury resulting in PTSD.
Getting compensation for PTSD
Unfortunately, people often face challenges when it comes to receiving a PTSD diagnosis and securing effective treatment. And because there is not always a direct connection between PTSD and work, applying for workers’ compensation benefits can be complicated.
Thankfully, legal and medical professionals have experience in these areas and can help workers pursue the care and support they deserve.