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Holding down 2 or more jobs can be harmful to your health

| Apr 8, 2015 | Workers’ Compensation

The cost of living continues to rise in many parts of America. Some workers are unable to support themselves and their households with a single full-time job. An increasingly large number of employees are working second or even third jobs to help ends meet, as every Chicago accident attorney recognizes.

Working 60, 70 or even 80 hours per week can be exhausting and dangerous. According to a recent research study using data from the National Health Interview Survey carried out by the U.S. Census Bureau, overworked employees face serious health risks at work and away from work.

More workers forced to perform multiple jobs

According to a recent article in USA Today, more than 5 percent of all American workers currently hold two or more jobs. In some areas that are undergoing rapid economic change, such as the oil boom regions of the Plains states, the proportion of workers with multiple jobs is as high as 10 percent.

Increased injury rates

When a person takes a second job, injury rates rise sharply. According to the NHIS study, multiple jobholders face a 27 percent greater risk of a disabling accident on the job. People with more than one job are also less safe at home. NHIS statistics show that multiple jobholders are 34 percent more prone to injury away from the work environment.

Health dangers of multiple jobs

Working multiple jobs can be a powerful financial strategy, but it also creates a number of health dangers for employees, including all of the following:

  • Physical stress from overwork
  • Time management problems at home and in the workplace
  • Unpredictable or illogical work schedules
  • Commuting difficulties
  • Severe sleep deprivation, leading to impaired function

The last of these dangers is especially lethal because it can cause traffic crashes and serious industrial accidents. Any Chicago accident attorney can confirm that no worker should be forced to drive or operate machinery without sufficient sleep.

Managing risks for multiple jobholders

Multiple employment is a reality for many hardworking Americans. No one can eliminate the risks of overwork and exhaustion, but employers should accommodate their employees when possible with better training, better scheduling practices and education about injury risks in the workplace. In some cases, telecommuting and ride-sharing can also take part of the burden off workers.

People who work several jobs have options if they become disabled. Injured employees should consider calling a Chicago accident attorney to talk about their case.