3 Ways Chronic Pain Reduces Your Productivity at Work (and What to Do About It)

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In Canada, chronic pain, which is pain that lasts for more than 90 days, is a common condition. “Among people living in private households, 16% of those aged 18 to 64 and 27% of seniors reported chronic pain. The prevalence rose to 38% for seniors living in long-term health care institutions,” per Statistics Canada

Those who experience chronic pain often have a tough time performing essential daily activities, such as errands and housework, and many pain sufferers miss work or perform poorly at work due to their pain. 

3 Ways Chronic Pain Can Affect Your Career

Do you have chronic pain? Here are a few ways it can potentially affect your productivity at work:

1) It causes absenteeism — One of the primary ways chronic pain affects your productivity in the office is by causing you to miss work. In the U.S., absenteeism cost employers $150 billion USD per year. But absenteeism doesn’t just affect your employer financially — it also affects you by lessening your pay. 

2) It slows you down physically — Have you ever been present at work, yet unable to perform at the capacity you typically do? This is called presenteeism, and it puts even more of a financial burden on your employer than absenteeism does. For example, whereas absenteeism costs U.S. employers $150 billion USD per year, presenteeism costs them up to $250 billion USD annually. 

3) It slows you down mentally — In addition to impeding your physical ability to work, chronic pain can also dampen your focus. You may not have as much mental energy to be creative, and your mood can easily suffer as a result of being in pain. This can also lower your productivity, especially if you work in an environment that is mentally taxing. 

What To Do When Pain Interferes with Work 

If you are experiencing chronic pain that is interfering with your daily work tasks and reducing your efficiency, speak to your supervisor. Let them know that you are working through health issues. Then, seek medical treatment. 

One treatment available to you is physiotherapy. Physiotherapy is a safe, drug-free treatment option with a high success rate for quelling pain. Besides reducing pain, physiotherapy also enhances mood, strengthens muscles, and helps you achieve and maintain a healthy weight. Physiotherapists are firstline medical providers, therefore you don’t need a referral from another doctor to make an appointment with a physiotherapist. 

Want to find out exactly how a physiotherapist can help you reduce chronic pain this year? Check this out.

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