Is Your Job Making You Sick? 8 Signs Of Physical, Mental & Emotional Illnesses Caused By Work

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It is no secret that work can be the catalyst for many stressors in our lives. Demanding work hours, toxic co-workers, environmental issues and work/life balance may all cause you to become physically, mentally and emotionally ill.

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Most human resource departments initiate programs to assist employees in managing and alleviating such stressors, but it is important to recognize them so you may timely address any issues.

Here are eight common illnesses caused by jobs:

1. Insomnia

Have you ever found yourself tossing and turning at night at the thought of having to return to that wretched job you just can’t stomach? Unfortunately, displeasure with a job, a boss or co-worker may affect your sleep patterns, which in turn starts to affect your health. Prayer, meditation, drinking tea, and/or reading and relaxing with a positive distraction may allow for a more consistent means of turning in early and sleeping through the night.

2. Anger and Hostility

Most employees exhibit anger and hostility towards their employers and co-workers for numerous reasons. One of the most stressful triggers of any job is a major lack of control with how, where, when and with whom you have to work, thereby leading to anger and hostility. Beware, as anger and hostility are the emotions most strongly associated with heart disease.

3. Anxiety, Fear and/or Uneasiness

At a particular job, my relationship with my boss became so contentious, whenever I saw his name/number on my caller ID I would immediately get nauseous. I always anticipated some form of bad news, criticism or just bad attitude and my body would react. These stressors should not be ignored as they may lead to emotional and physical distress. Identify the triggers and seek remedies to calm them.

4. You’re frequently sick

Offices and co-workers can be a hotbed for germs. People constantly sneezing, wheezing and coughing in or around your personal space, while germs and dust mites consistently congregating on your phone, computer and other office devices often times lead to several bouts of sickness throughout the year. If this is the case, speak with management in re proper cleaning and upkeep of the office. Additionally, requesting space from a sick co-worker may also solve the problem as well.

5. Noisy and Deafening Workplaces

For those working in construction, or at an airport, you must take precautions for your hearing by wearing protective apparatus for your ears. Persistent exposure to loud noises may not only affect your hearing, they may also cause unnecessary headaches.

6. Overeating

I once had a friend who attended work dinners EVERY night. I was always appreciative when she would bring me along at times, but she sometimes spoke about not being able to ward off the extra pounds the late meals brought. The same weight gain can also be attributed to sitting behind a desk all day, with little to no movement and constantly consuming calories. If you have a desk job that keeps you pretty stagnant during the day, watch the foods and drinks you are consuming to ward off unhealthy weight gain.

7. Carpal tunnel syndrome and Lower back pain.

Repetitive motions of typing, clicking your mouse, or answering your phone, can cause carpal tunnel syndrome which consists of sharp pain, tingling, numbness, and itching. Additionally, sitting for hours with bad posture may have a terrible toll on your back and body. As this may cause actual nerve damage requiring surgery, take precaution by purchasing ergonomic items to relieve the stress.

8. Workplace violence

We have witnessed numerous experiences of disgruntled employees, customers, even random acts of violence in office places over the years. If you work in an environment that is tense and/or where emotions run high, it’s possible that you might become the victim of workplace violence. Make management and human resources aware of any employees who make you uncomfortable or any instances of violence to avoid physical harm in the future.

As much time as we spend at and on our jobs, we should take every action possible to protect ourselves from any harmful factors that may affect our health. If you suspect that something on your job is the catalyst for unnecessary pains, aches or stress, identify those triggers and speak with an HR representative to seek solutions.

Rashida Maples, Esq. is Founder and Managing Partner of J. Maples & Associates (www.jmaplesandassociates.com). She has practiced Entertainment, Real Estate and Small Business Law for 9 years, handling both transactional and litigation matters. Her clients include R&B Artists Bilal and Olivia, NFL Superstar Ray Lewis, Fashion Powerhouse Harlem’s Fashion Row and Hirschfeld Properties, LLC.

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