Has Your Disability Caused You To Be Obese - This May Add On Value To Your Workers Compensation Case
A workplace injury can be devastating. Not only can it limit the amount of work you are able to do, it can limit the daily activities you are able to participate in with you and your family. Your employer is obligated to provide you medical care for the health problems created by your injuries, but what happens when your injury causes you to have additional health problems, such as weight gain, or causes you to be obese? Should these be addressed, or can you be compensated for those as well? These are questions you may want to address with your accident and injury attorney.
What Is Obesity?
You have probably heard the word obesity used synonymously with overweight, but there is a slight difference. Both numbers reflect your body weight being greater than the recommended amount for a person of your height and are measured by your BMI (Body Mass Index). How much you are overweight is the difference between the two.
- Your BMI is considered to be healthy when it falls between 18.5 - 24.9.
- You are considered to be overweight when your BMI is 25 - 29.9.
- You are considered to be obese when your BMI is 30 or higher.
Although this is a common number computed by your doctor's office, it is a number that is computed in metrics. You must first convert your weight to kilograms and your height to meters. You then use the following formula.
Weight/Height = BMI
If you choose not to go through all of this, you can compute your own by using a BMI calculator. If you find that you are obese, you are not alone. More than 34.9% or approximately 78.6 million adults in the US suffer from this condition.
What Are The Causes Of Obesity?
While genetics and overeating can cause you to be obese, there are other factors that can be directly related to your accident or injury that could cause you to be obese as well. These include:
- Physical inactivity - If you are unable to be as physically active as you have been in the past, you may easily see the pounds start to pack on even if you have not had any changes to your diet. This is because weight gain is caused by consuming more calories than you are expending. If you are used to being more physically active, you may have burnt these calories off in the past.
- Various medications - Antidepressants, corticosteroids, high blood pressure medications, and many others have been known to lead to weight gain. Some of these are medications that are used to combat certain injuries, or injury related conditions.
- Psychological factors - Stress, boredom, and depression can also cause you to crave food, which will lead to you packing on the pounds. Recovering from a serious injury is often a very stressful time.
- Certain Diseases - Sometimes your injury may put you at risk of having other diseases or conditions that you have not had before. For example, your inactivity, weight gain, and certain medications may put you at risk of developing diabetes. This disease in turn can create even additional complications for your full recovery.
How Does Obesity Complicate Your Existing Injury?
Depending on the type of injury you have, additional weight gain or becoming obese can seriously hinder your ability to fully recover. This is especially true if you have had an injury of your lower extremities such as your knees or ankles. The additional weight may make it difficult for you to exercise or participate in a physical therapy program that you need for your optimal healing.
What Should You Do?
If you have a serious work related injury that has taken you out of work, you should immediately contact an accident and injury attorney. They will understand that your obesity, or any related condition may be considered to be a comorbidity, or a condition that is co-occurring, along with your existing injury or illness. They will be able to show the causation between the two. This could mean additional compensation under your existing claim, additional medical care to deal with your obesity, or they may even advise you to file a secondary claim for your weight gain that may allow you to seek additional compensation. Contact an attorney today for a full review of your records, and for their advice. If you are still looking for an attorney, check out a site like http://www.tarklaw.com.