Many people in Minnesota and throughout the country earn their living as a hairstylist. If you are a hairstylist, you no doubt understand what a demanding job it is. It not only requires excellent customer service skills but also long hours of standing and performing all of the physical tasks commonly associated with hair washing, cutting and styling. Repetitive Strain Injury [RSI] is high risk for stylists, especially involving their hands and wrists.
RSI is a term that refers to a broad range of injuries that typically occur when a person works at a job where he or she must maintain the same posture or position or make the same types of movements over and over again for hours on end, every day or several days per week. Hairstylists, in particular, often suffer RSI in their hands and wrists. It is an injury that develops over a period of time.
Are there ways to prevent RSI as a hairstylist?
Just because you have built a career as a hairstylist doesn’t necessarily mean that you will suffer from RSI at some point. However, since you do happen to work in an industry where the risk for such injuries is high, it’s good to know that there are several tips that may help lower your risk.
As a hairstylist, you’re not only at risk for RSI in your hands and wrists but also in your neck, shoulders and upper back, as well. To reduce the chances of developing RSI and chronic pain issues, it’s best to try to maintain good posture during the workday. It’s also helpful to perform hand and finger dexterity exercises, daily. Finally, using ergonomic tools may help keep you and your fellow hairstylists safer when it comes to preventing RSI on the job.
If you have developed an RSI and can no longer work
Whether you’ve been active in the hairstyling industry for less than five years or for several decades, an RSI injury can have a devastating effect on your career. Symptoms often include swelling, inflammation, stiffness and pain. If your condition reaches a certain level of severity, you may be unable to work.
If this happens, it’s important to learn as much as you can about Social Security Disability [SSD] laws. SSD is a federally governed program that provides financial assistance to people with certain medical conditions that have rendered them unable to perform work duties of any kind.