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Based on: Industry Standards and Best Practices

Languages: English

First Aid - Sprains and Strains

Training Time: 15 minutes

Sprains and strains aren’t the most serious injury a person can experience at work, but they are among the most common. This course explains what sprains and strains are, explains the RICE method for training sprains and strains, and gives tips on when a person with a strain or sprain should seek additional medical care.

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To help protect the injured area, the person may want to get protection aids such as crutches or a knee scooter to keep weight off the body part, or a sling, splint, or boot to reduce movement and strain for a few days.

To help protect the injured area, the person may want to get protection aids such as crutches or a knee scooter to keep weight off the body part, or a sling, splint, or boot to reduce movement and strain for a few days.

Sprains and strains are common injuries at workplaces, and often result from working too hard, unwisely, without proper regard to ergonomics, as a result of horseplay, or as a result of poor housekeeping.

Sprains and strains are common injuries at workplaces, and often result from working too hard, unwisely, without proper regard to ergonomics, as a result of horseplay, or as a result of poor housekeeping.

Compress the injured body area with an elastic wrap or a similar bandage.

Compress the injured body area with an elastic wrap or a similar bandage.

Learning Objectives

  • Explain what sprains and strains are
  • List some ways to prevent sprains and strains
  • List and describe the four steps of the RICE first aid method for a sprain and strain
  • List some reasons to get additional medical care for a sprain or strain
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First Aid - Sprains and Strains FAQs

What is a sprain?
A sprain is a stretched or torn ligament.

What is a strain?
A strain is a stretched or torn muscle.

What is appropriate first aid for a sprain or strain?
The acronym RICE walks you through the four basic steps of providing first aid for a sprain or strain: rest, ice, compress, and elevate.

What are some common ways of suffering a sprain and strain at work?
Working too hard or too quickly; working with poor or improper ergonomics; working in a work area with poor housekeeping; and horseplay at work.

Is it ever necessary to seek medical care for a sprain or strain?
Yes, though in most cases this isn’t necessary, in some cases it is. This includes if the injured area won’t support weight, if the area is numb or unstable, if there’s severe swelling or pain, if the person can’t move the injured area, or in there is redness or red streaks (which indicate infection).

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