Due to COVID-19, many people are working from home, either for the first time or more often than usual. Generally, though, we don’t have proper desks, which is leading to backaches, neck aches, repetitive strain, and other pains. Creating the right ergonomics to work from home safely and pain-free is essential.
Why Is Ergonomics Important?
Staying in one place, repetitive motion, poor posture, etc. during an eight-hour (or longer) workday can cause everything from temporary pain to long-term damage such as carpal tunnel syndrome. Work from home ergonomics involves creating a safer environment that prevents those problems and allows you to work comfortably.
Ergonomics for remote work is important because musculoskeletal strain from repetitive movement, bad posture, a poor physical set up, and even temperature extremes can cause fatigue, discomfort, back pain, shallow breathing, headaches, jaw pain, and more. Over time, that can turn into severe pain and musculoskeletal disorders. Fortunately, small changes to posture and your setup can make a huge difference.
What Is Ergonomics in the Workplace?
Ergonomics in the workplace includes making sure you have the right positioning, posture, chair, tools, etc. to work without strain or fatigue – whether you’re working from home or in an office. Most changes are very simple and cost nothing. With time, they can become good habits.
Ergonomic Tips for Working From Home Include:
- Sitting in a firm chair with lower back support. The couch is too soft.
- Setting your monitor sin a position where you’re looking straight ahead instead of bending your neck down. If using a laptop, place it on a book or use a separate monitor to raise the screen height.
- A mouse is easier to use when working for hours than a trackpad.
Posture Tips for Working From Home Include:
- Good sitting posture is important, which is why the couch is a bad work seat.
- Sit with your legs bent 90 degrees perpendicular to the floor with feet flat on the floor.
- Don’t sit too long. Get up for at least 5 minutes once every hour and walked around.
- Alternating occasionally with a small footstool can also help.
- If you regularly use the phone, do so with a headset or on speaker mode to avoid twisting your neck.
- Good lighting and sitting at a proper table, like a dining room table if you don’t have a desk, is also important instead of balancing a computer on your lap.
- Check out these other tips on how to improve your posture while working from home.
More Guides On Proper Workplace Ergonomics
The Mayo Clinic put together a guide to proper ergonomics that applies both for remote work and in an office. The BBC also produced a guide on how to work from home comfortably, and Boston University released 10 ergonomics do’s and don’ts for working from home to provide additional ergonomic tips for working from home.
Talk to Total Chiropractic Care and Wellness
If you want to maintain good health while working from home chiropractic care can help, contact us at Total Chiropractic Care. You will receive a comprehensive evaluation to determine if it’s the right solution for your needs. Dr. Goldman creates treatment plans that incorporate pain management services as well as general lifestyle recommendations to help you live the best life you can. Contact us today.