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Painters and on the job injuries: You’re at risk

As a painter, you know exactly what you're getting into every day you arrive at work. But what you may not realize is that you're at risk of suffering an injury at some point.

Here are some of the many injuries that can plague you as a painter:

  • Falls from heights: When working on a ladder or scaffolding, you're always at risk of falling to the ground below. Do your best to protect against this, such as by using guardrails when painting on scaffolding.
  • Chemical exposure: Depending on the type of paint and related products you're using, you may come in regular contact with dangerous chemicals that can affect your nose, eyes and lungs.
  • Repetitive stress injuries: Day after day, you use the same body parts to do your job. For example, your arm goes up and down, hour after hour, as you stroke a paintbrush or roll a roller. Over time, this can result in a repetitive stress injury, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, tendinitis or painter's shoulder.
  • Slips and falls: You're at risk of slipping on tarps you use to cover your workspace, tools, equipment or debris.

If you suffer an injury at work, stop what you're doing to assess your situation. You should also report the incident to your employer, as to make it clear to them that you were injured on the job.

Once you receive medical treatment, you'll know if you can immediately return to work or if you need to take time off. If your doctor suggests a break to recover, learn more about receiving workers' compensation benefits.

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