Simple Tips To Help With Prolonged Desk WorkFebruary 4, 2021
With the ongoing pandemic, we have all had to make changes in our daily routines. To minimize the amount of people at work, a number of employees have shifted to the “work from home” option. With this location choice we, as chiropractors, have seen an increase in low back and neck related issues. People have made due with working at the kitchen table or using a dining room chair for prolonged periods and it is wreaking havoc on their bodies. People often change the way they sit to form to their work stations instead of creating an area that is appropriate for their specific size and height. When a person conforms to a space they increase their body fatigue and musculoskeletal problems. Cardiovascular and circulatory issues, back pain and weight gain become synonymous with prolonged sitting. Patients using a mouse and keyboard complain of carpal tunnel and elbow issues that they may have never had before. With how a monitor is positioned, people are either straining their necks or straining their eyes after an eight hour day in front of a computer.
Simple Tips To Help With Prolonged Desk Work
For proper chair height, your thighs should be parallel to the floor or use a foot rest to achieve this position. Armrests should also be adjusted so that they are at seated elbow height and not pushing a person’s arms upwards. The backrest of a chair should support the small of your back. If that is not an option, take a rolled up towel and place it into the small of your back to create lumbar support so that you are not leaning too far back or forward.
When using a keyboard and mouse, people tend to lean forward to use these items and break contact with their chair backs. Instead your mouse and keyboard should be elbow height and not positioned where you have to strain your back to use them. A keyboard wrist rest can help angle your elbows to 80 degrees so that tension can be dispersed equally across the forearms. An ergonomic mouse pad can also help elevate wrists into a neutral position so they are not overly elevated thus reducing carpal tunnel and wrist fatigue.
Lastly, let us talk monitors. A computer monitor should be an arms length away from a user and at eye level. Most people have it set up so they tend to lean forward to use their screens or if on a laptop they have it set on a surface too low like a coffee table. We should not have to strain our bodies in order to see a screen. Another factor to consider is lighting. Being in a setting with minimal or excessive light can strain your eyes and cause discomfort. A simple desk light and taking adequate breaks every hour of at least one minute can allow your body to recover from excessive strain.
Work station ergonomics seem like a simple concept, but we all could benefit from a home evaluation of our desks since no one is perfect. A day without learning one fact is a day wasted and we could all save our bodies from undue musculoskeletal issues if we take a moment to reflect and change for the better.
The Van Ness Chiropractic Difference
At Van Ness Chiropractic, we realize that managing stress and imbalance in the body is not one size fits all. We have the clinical knowledge and expert staff to offer targeted treatment and patient education that is effective and empowering. Call us today at 847-842-8070 to set up your appointment for a comprehensive examination and get on the road to health today. You can also visit us at vannesschiro.com to find out more.