As you probably know, office work can badly affect your body, mainly: neck, back, shoulders and spine.
Spending many hours at the computer, you shouldn’t be surprised that you have got a stiff neck, arm pain, sore back.
Your discomfort due to poor office ergonomics.
Below you can find some tips how to set up a healthy office ergonomic environment.
But first, let me explain what does ergonomic mean?
Ergonomics is the process of designing or arranging workplaces, products and systems so that they fit the people who use them.
Proper ergonomic design is necessary to prevent repetitive strain injuries and other musculoskeletal disorders which can develop over time and can lead to long-term disability.
How to identify musculoskeletal disorders caused by unhealthy office environment?
You can feel:
- discomfort or pain in the neck, shoulders, fingers, wrists, spine. It can be short – term suffer (usually for up to a few hoursor) but also long – term suffer (ranging from dull aching pain to sharp stabbing pain or a burning sensation).
- tingling or numbness in the fingers, wrists or hands.
- muscular cramp or stiffness.
- muscle tightness or spasms
- sensation of heaviness around the neck, limb, back.
- weakness of muscles
- joint sweling,
- loss of coordination, difficulties moving.
All comapnies should create safe and healthy work environment becouse it is good for both employees and employers. Work-related Musculoskeletal Disorders are prolonged injuries which very often take a long time to back into the work place. In such situation, employer must to hire new employees or pay staff for overtime. There are also high medical expenses for sufferers and their families.
It doesn’t matter what type of business you are in, all enterprises have to build an ergonomically workspace which are health and safety for all employees. Good ergonomics practices could protect from physical injury and also increase productivity. This is obligatory for all employers to use appropriate ergonomic chairs and desks in the office.
Below there are some valuable tips to improve workstation ergonomics.
- Ergonomic Office chair
mobile, swivel chair with:
a comfortable cushin – has a significant impact on the comfort of your work.
an arm rests – an office chair with an arm rests; it is healthy position to bent your elbow at around 90 degree angle.
an adjustable back rest with headrest- an office chair with an adjustable back rest and headrest can allow you use correct posture.
Spine suport – back of your chair should suport your posture by gently pushing forward on your lower back
an adjustable seat height – height of your chair must suit to your height; it’s essential to put:
– arms at the same height as work-desk,
-feet flat on the floor
-thighs parallel to the floor.
2. Ergonomic office desk
Set up an ergonomic desk.
Usually on our desk job – there are monitor, keybord, mouse, telephone, document holder and also office supplies.
Put the monitor directly in front of you, about an arm’s length away. Place your monitor at around 15 degrees below your horizontal line of sight. The monitor should be directly behind your keyboard.
Place mouse on the same surface as keyboard. When you are typing or using mouse, you should keep your:
– upper arms close to your body,
– wrists straight, ,
– hands at or slightly below the level of your elbows.
You shoul use a footrest – if your chair is too high for you to rest your feet flat on the floor or the height of your desk requires you to raise the height of your chair.
4. Reducing repetitive movement
Most Musculoskeletal Disorders are caused by repetitive motion. Even if you apply ergonomic rules, repeating the same motion for a long time can cause stress and lead to injury. However you can protect yourself against health problems by changing tasks. Performing a various actions even for a short time will reduce the risk for injury. By modyfing the task you change the position of your body.
5. Take a break
If you work in front of a computer all day, you probably notice that your eyes get tired. Staring at a screen for hours can affect your vision. That are the symptoms of looking at monitor computer most of your time.
– Dry or watering eyes,
– Itchy eyes,
– double vision,
– blurry vision,
– changes in color perception.
So, if you don’t feel comfortable and every day you struggle with eyes strain and pain, you need to make some changes in the performance of your duty.
Take a break: every 20 minutes look away from your computer and gaze on something at the distance of few metres. It should take you for about 30 seconds.
You can also take a 5 minutes break after each hour of using computer. Therefore once an hour you should stand up and take a few minutes to do anything that gets you out of their chair.
6. Environmental setting
Proper lighting, temperature, humidity, guantity and quality of air provided inside the area of office and conveniences are critical.
Provisions of the Labour Code and also other additional legal regulations concerning tips for managers:
– how to organize health and safety work,
– how fully enforce the rulling by employees,
– how react when something doesn’t work like it should.
These are basic tips which should help you create a healthy and safe office. We all are responsible for improving our corporate life. Our choices, behaviours must also include office ergonomic fixes, which must be done immediately becouse of staff existence. All actions shall be taken right now. Procrastination can only worsen medical condition of employees.