When it comes to work related illness and injuries, Americans often think of chronic conditions such as arthritis, knee pain, and back pain. However, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the most common work related illness is actually hearing loss.

Hearing loss is the most common work related illness because of how often workers are exposed to excessive noise on the job. Sounds that are higher than 85 decibels can cause permanent hearing damage if a worker is exposed to them over long periods of time.

Know your risk for hearing loss

It’s in your best interest to wear safety equipment while on the job should your workplace recommend or even require doing so. This will help to protect you from hearing loss.

According to a CDC study on occupational injuries between 2003 and 2012, the following industries were more likely to cause hearing loss among their workers:

    • Mining
    • Construction
    • Manufacturing
    • Healthcare
    • Wholesale
    • Agriculture
    • Transportation
    • Public safety

The study also found that males were more likely to suffer from hearing loss than females. Additionally, the rate of hearing impairment increased with the age of all workers.

Hearing loss and workers compensation claims

Up to 70% of workers compensation is directly related to recovering wages and salaries that were lost due to the illness or injury. The additional 30% of workers comp is related to the actual workers compensation benefits.

Filing a workers comp claim for hearing impairment is possible. However, like other work related illnesses, the problem lies in proving your hearing loss was caused by your workplace.

This can be a challenge for workers who are older and may be suffering from general hearing loss. If your hearing loss was a preexisting condition that worsened due to your workplace, your hearing must have worsened up to 10% in order to qualify for workers compensation.

An Arizona workers compensation attorney can help you in the event that your hearing loss workers comp claim has been denied. Arizona workers comp lawyers can provide you with the legal advice you need to file an appeal. For more information on workers compensation for hearing loss and what you need to do to file a claim, contact the law offices of Robert E. Wisniewski for a consultation today.