Discontinuing your job to nurse an injury can disrupt your workflow and impact your motivation. Finding the desire to return to work might take some time.
Knowing what to consider before reentering the workforce can help you avoid costly mistakes. Listening to your health care provider and optimizing your recovery might improve your confidence and readiness to return.
Depending on the severity of your injury, you may have relied heavily on your workers’ compensation benefits. You might inquire of your employer whether or not they provide a return-to-work plan. Such a strategy allows you to gradually resume your former responsibilities. After consulting with your health care provider and assessing your condition, some of the job modifications your employer might offer include the following:
- Technological assistance
- Telecommuting options
- Modified responsibilities
- Workspace modifications to improve accessibility
According to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, job modifications may also include a temporary job transfer. Prior to returning to work, you will want to make sure your physical condition allows you to safely and effectively perform your job.
Even if you have nearly completed your physical recovery, you should also pay attention to your mental health. The repercussions of an unexpected injury can cause stress, anxiety and even depression. You may need to focus some resources on helping you work through trauma and perceived barriers before you can start working again.
Depending on the situation, your employer may have some suggestions of resources you can draw upon to continue your mental and emotional healing. It is important to keep your employer informed of your mental health as you continue to recover.
Workers’ compensation benefits should not end after you receive emergency medical help. When you know your rights and the purpose of your benefits, you can advocate for your healing and make a successful return to the workplace.