If you work at a computer for several hours a day, you are putting your health at great risk. You might think that an office job is one of the safest professions there is. Surely when compared to stuntmen, race car drivers, and snake handlers? Although it may not be quite in that league, working at a computer for long periods can have huge impacts on your mental and physical wellbeing.
The sedentary nature of office work can lead to a higher risk of muscular-skeletal disorders, obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. Staring at a screen all day can dramatically worsen your vision, and working high-pressure jobs with few breaks can cause stress, anxiety, and serious mental health problems.
So how can you avoid these health risks at work?
Get better equipment
By switching up the tools you use at work, you can improve your posture and reduce your risk of developing aches, pains, and spinal problems. An ergonomic desk chair providing lower back support will help you maintain proper posture and protect your neck and back. You can also buy an ergonomic keyboard for Mac or PC relatively cheaply, which will help to protect your wrist and forearm against repetitive strain injuries and muscular-skeletal conditions. Take care to ensure that your desk and chair are at the correct height to prevent straining your neck.
Working for long stretches without a break is terrible for both your mental and physical health. It can worsen the physical impact of your job and also lead to burnout from overwork. Make sure you schedule regular breaks throughout your day, and not just your lunch break. Take a ten-minute break every hour to get up and walk around. Use this time to have a hot drink, chat with colleagues, and momentarily free your mind from work. You’ll feel recharged and more productive when you get back to your desk.
Stretching is one of the best ways to prevent injury caused by poor posture. At the end of the day and throughout, take some time to stretch out your arms, legs, neck, and back. You’ll instantly feel better, and it will greatly reduce your chances of developing health problems. Consider getting into yoga, as this has proven benefits for all aspects of your health.
Protect your vision
Eye strain is a major risk of working at a computer. Staring at a screen without a break can cause your vision to degenerate over time, and this is worsened by sitting too close and not blinking. Make sure you give your eyes a quick break every fifteen minutes to look out the window. When reading large chunks of text, print them out instead to avoid overusing your computer or phone screen.
I was diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder 5 years ago after I had lost my job. Those were harsh times. I almost lost my family. Xanax at helped me “to dig out from the pit” I’ve got into. My restlessness and irritability were gone. I began to sleep better. Now I stick to the dose 0.5mg three times a day and feel well.
29% of workers claim to feel extremely stressed at work, which can have severe mental health impacts. Give your mental wellbeing a boost by asking your boss for help managing your workload. Alternatively, improving your time management skills might help you reduce some of the pressure.