Whether you work in an industry that traditionally comes with long hours, such as trucking, or you have made a habit of regularly picking up overtime, you could be putting your health and safety, as well as that of others, at risk. You and other Colorado residents who put in long hours may enjoy the extra income, but there are some important things you should know about working longer than 40 hours per week.
Long workdays over an extended period of time come with numerous health risks, cautions Healthline. In addition to making you tired, the stress of doing your job for more than eight hours a day or 40 hours a week causes your body to produce the hormone cortisol, which over time can wreak havoc on your system. Medical studies have shown that chronic overtime hours can result in the following health complications:
- A higher risk of suffering from anxiety and depression
- Sleep disruption and daytime fatigue
- Repetitive motion disorders and neck and back pain
- An increased likelihood of developing obesity, type 2 diabetes, stroke, heart disease or cancer
- Strain on personal relationships
In addition to the above problems, your productivity and morale may begin to suffer when your work hours are constantly long. Fatigue and joint pain can certainly affect your job performance, but there is also a higher likelihood of exhausted, stressed workers causing a workplace accident. It goes without saying that accidents on the job can be serious and even fatal, especially where heavy machinery, heights and complex structures are involved.
There is nothing wrong with taking on a few extra hours now and then. However, you may wish to examine your work life if your employer requires you to work past the point of exhaustion on a regular basis. You may be eligible for workers’ compensation after a workplace accident.