Since the COVID-19 pandemic struck, there’s been a drastic increase in the number of employees working from home. Are you one of those people forced into a work-from-home setup because of the crisis? Then, you may be starting to notice some aches and pains you’ve never felt before—like back pain. Especially if you’ve been working in an office.
The reason for this is quite simple. Since most companies follow a certain standard in designing their workstations. That is, most are furnished with ergonomic furniture and follow an ergonomic design. However, the case is not always the same when it comes to your home. Most houses don’t even have a dedicated office space. Choosing instead, to use the dining table, a counter top, or even the bed, to work. Now, using these spaces for short periods of time is okay. And you don’t need to worry that much. However, if you’ll be doing this for weeks, months, and even years…this is something you have to think about.
To prevent you from suffering from chronic back pain in the future, pay attention to these:
Keep your computer screen at eye-level.
Position your monitor in front of you at a comfortable viewing height. Comfortable viewing means that you don’t have to bend or stretch your neck. For laptop users, try raising your laptop on a stack of books or a breakfast table. If you can’t adjust your screen height, adjust your seat’s height instead.
Adjust your keyboard and mouse.
After raising your laptop, use a separate keyboard and mouse to avoid wrist strain. When using your keyboard and mouse, your forearms should be level with your hands. Keep your arms close to the side of your body. The farther it is, the higher the chances are of straining your neck or shoulders.
Lean back in your chair.
Don’t hunch forward, or sit at the edge of your seat. To prevent back pain, the ideal position of the spine is when it is curved in towards your stomach. This puts the least pressure on your intervertebral discs. If you lean forward, your spine bends out. A bent-out spine places a lot of pressure on your discs. When you sit back on your chair, the chair back can support some of your body weight. If your chair doesn’t offer good lower-back support, you can place a cushion behind your lower back. You may also use a rolled-up towel. Better yet, invest in an ergonomic chair.
Keep your feet flat on the floor.
Sitting on your feet or dangling them can put pressure on your thighs. This will then restrict blood flow to your lower legs. To prevent the risk of deep vein thrombosis, keep your feet flat on the floor. If you can’t quite reach the floor, use a footrest or a pile of books.