If you get hurt on the job, you should report it as quickly as you can. Some workers attempt to “shake it off” or “grit their teeth” and just work through the pain. They may sit down for a few minutes to see if they feel better, then head back to work without saying anything.
This is not wise. Don’t underestimate your potential injuries. For example, if you strike your head and lose consciousness for a moment, you may start to feel better almost immediately upon waking up. Some workers decide they don’t need to say anything because they’re not that badly injured. The reality, though, is that they have a traumatic brain injury and/or internal bleeding, which goes unnoticed since they stay quiet. Don’t worry about reducing production for the day. Think about your health. Say something if you get injured.
In some cases, injuries just develop slowly. Bleeding on the brain may have no symptoms at first, may lead to a mild headache that evening and could turn potentially fatal the next day. Don’t wait for it to get to that point. Report it as soon as you notice any symptoms — and this goes for more than just head injuries.
Plus, on the legal side, the state government points out that you can get denied workers’ compensation benefits if you delay too long. Thirty days is the maximum time allowed in most cases. Even waiting a shorter time, though it may not make it impossible to seek benefits, can make it harder. Your employer may try to claim that you got hurt outside of work or that it must not have been as bad as you claim since you didn’t speak up right away.
Once you make that report, then you can take advantage of your legal options. If you have trouble obtaining workers’ comp for your injuries, make sure that you speak with an experienced advocate about your case.