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Definition - What does Overexertion mean?

Overexertion is a feeling of mental or physical drain based on the type of work involved that can tax the body to the point where bouts of fatigue or an injury can occur. While most jobs impose both physical and mental demands to a certain degree, employers must be aware of the risks of overexertion in the workplace to prevent injuries over time.

SureHire explains Overexertion

Mental and physical stress is often synonymous with overexertion numbers across different lines of work. Manual labor can place heavy physical demands on the body from frequent lifting, pushing, and pulling objects, compounded by awkward body postures and repetitive motions. While employees can adapt to cumulative loads inside a work shift, overexertion can lead to sprains, strains, and tears of the joints, ligaments, muscles, and tendons. Biomechanical defects can cause acute or chronic health conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome, osteoarthritis, and repetitive stress injury(s) (RSI).


People who hold sedentary jobs can feel the effects of fatigue and stress with underpinning symptoms leading to burnout. Employers must recognize telltale signs of mental overexertion such as accident-prone behavior, cognitive deficits, depression, and slowed motor reflexes. Companies can promote a health-conscious atmosphere where employees feel compelled to adopt proper nutrition and good sleeping habits, backed by workplace privileges such as spelled duties and rest breaks to reduce overexertion cases.

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