During the month of June, the National Safety Council will mark National Safety Month by drawing attention to a series of concerns that Americans face. Week 1 of June focuses on prescription drug abuse.

Abuse of prescription painkillers is becoming an epidemic across the country. Many of these addictions stem from accidents in the workplace or auto accidents. Often, these accidents are preventable with the proper precautions.

Prescription Drug Abuse in the Workplace

Back injuries are the fifth most common reason that people see a doctor and one of the most common workplace injuries, particularly for workers in industrial and maritime environments.

While most injuries are treated well with anti-inflammatories, exercise and physical therapy, opioid prescription painkillers are sometimes used. These prescriptions should only be used for seven days or less, as longer use increases the risk of addiction and complications.

Employers should observe state and federal safety standards to help workers avoid injuries that could potentially lead to a painkiller addiction. The Houston work injury attorneys at Schechter, Shaffer & Harris, L.L.P., Accident & Injury Lawyers also advise workers to observe some basic safety measures, including:

  • Always wear your safety gear
  • Maintain good posture
  • Practice proper lifting techniques
  • Report safety hazards as soon as they are noticed

If you are concerned about a co-worker’s prescription medication, the National Safety Council advises that the following behaviors at work could indicate a problem:

  • Bad decision-making
  • Inability to focus
  • Decreased productivity or work quality
  • Increased carelessness
  • Frequent absences

Workers who have been injured as a result of negligence should consider seeking assistance from an experience work injury attorney. Contact Schechter, Shaffer & Harris, L.L.P. today for a free consultation.