After a workplace injury, you may have pain that you need to deal with on a daily basis. It can be frustrating to live with pain, and it may make it hard for you to do your job.
You could be distracted by pain while you’re working, or you could have to take more regular breaks. You may need to go home early on some days, too, when the pain becomes too overwhelming.
What should you do if your doctor says you’re okay to work, but you’re still in pain?
The first thing you should do is speak up for yourself. Tell the doctor that you are willing to work but are concerned about the pain that you’re dealing with. If you let them know that you would like to get back to work but don’t feel that you’re ready because of certain symptoms, then they should listen.
The next step may be to attempt to start working. Then, note down when you have to leave early or when you have to stop working because the pain becomes too much. It may take only a few days (and a few witness statements) to show the doctor that your pain is not only real but also devastating as you try to work.
Sometimes, a second opinion is helpful
If your doctor won’t budge but you know that you can’t work because you keep ending up in so much pain, it’s time for a second opinion. Two doctors can have very different opinions about your health and wellbeing, so it’s really important to ask a second provider about their thoughts. Having them express that they agree with you could lead to you having further testing or evidence to show that you can’t actually return to work (or at least not full-time).
You deserve the best care as you recover from an injury
Remember, your employer has an obligation to provide you with the medical treatment you need. Your employer has a right to select a treating doctor, but if that doctor is harming you, you should discuss your options for getting another referral with your attorney.