Don’t Get Sicker! – Possibly the Most Important Lesson a North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Beneficiary Can Learn

September 12, 2011, by Michael A. DeMayo

Doctors have their Hippocratic Oath: “First, do no harm.” North Carolina workers’ compensation beneficiaries should also have an oath along those lines: “First, don’t make your medical situation worse.”

This advice should probably go without saying. Obviously, no one wants to get sick. And once we are sick, we generally want to do everything we can to get better – and quickly.

But there is a big gulf between believing that good care should be applied and living a healthy lifestyle, even if you’re injured or sick.

In a twisted version of the idea “the rich get richer and the poor get poorer,” often, the “sick get sicker.” In other words, once you already have an illness or injury, you become vulnerable to all sorts of medical and physical problems that you were previously invulnerable to.

For instance, say you broke your leg in an industrial plant, after your foot caught in an unmarked rut. Now, not only must you deal with the broken leg and all the complications the injury has created, but you also must protect yourself from favoring the other leg too much and causing wear and tear on the other leg. Your immune system could also be compromised by an injury/illness, making you susceptible to things like the flu or infections. And so on.

Once you get sicker and sicker, the situation becomes a vicious cycle. Hurt and sick workers often develop a mindset that “I am never going to get better,” which perpetuates/exacerbates the cycle. At some point, you need to break the cycle and start building toward “healthier and healthier.”

Obviously, one key to do that is great medical care – a proper, complete diagnosis; effective, compassionate, thorough medical treatment; the right medicines; the right diet; the right kind of exercises, and rehab plan, etc. You also may need to reprogram how you think about your health and make conscious choices to stop engaging in practices that you know are destructive but which you could “get away with” back when you were healthy. Practices like smoking cigarettes or cigarillos, “pushing yourself hard” as a weekend warrior in a volleyball or touch football league, or binging on root beer floats.

When you treat your body and mind with compassion – and with good care – you might be surprised at how quickly you are able to spring back from your injury/illness and take on the world again.

Connect with a North Carolina workers’ compensation law firm.

More web resources:

Breaking Free from Your Cigarette Addiction.

Breaking Free from Your Sugar Addiction.