Currently, over 70 percent of the global workforce use computers daily in an office. Most of the time spent in the office is time that employees must be working. Since employees are using a computer all day in their office, there are not many reasons for the individuals to move around.
Staring at a bright, fuzzy monitor for eight hours every day makes it very hard to maintain good health. There are a number of different health problems associated with long-term computer usage such as eyestrain, weight gain, musculoskeletal issues and even hypertension. Fortunately, there are a few practical, powerful ways to stay healthy in the office environment.
Get Fresh Air
Office employees very rarely leave the office to go outside. By spending even just a few minutes outside and away from the office, an office employee can relax and get rid of stress. Taking small breaks to leave the office and go outside throughout a workday can reduce stress substantially. Stress has been proven to cause a long list of health problems.
Another great way to stay healthy in the workplace is through the use of isometrics. These are very simple exercises that can be performed throughout the day. An isometric contraction can be described as a muscle contraction that does not require joint movement. An example of an isometric exercise is flexing abdominal muscles for a period of time, like 20 seconds, and then releasing the muscle. Isometric exercises will work great for any muscles in the body.
Get Up and Go
One of the biggest problems that employees in the office environment face is lack of movement. Computer work keeps employees sitting in the same position without moving around much at all. Office workers should find a way to get up and move around at least once every 20 minutes.
Even moving around a little bit in a chair or switching to a different seated position can help office workers stay healthy. A simple walk to the bathroom can make all of the difference.
Focus on a Distant Object
Staring at a computer screen for prolonged periods of time can be detrimental to an employee’s health because it degrades eyesight. Studies show that 75 percent of people who use a computer regularly have vision issues.
This problem is even referred to as computer vision syndrome. By focusing on a distant object about every 20 minutes, office employees can take some strain off of their eyes. Focusing on a distant object is a great way to help keep healthy eyes in an office environment.
Poor posture is easily one of the biggest contributing factors for back pain. People who work on the computer for prolonged periods of time are much more likely to suffer from poor posture than those who work elsewhere. If a person sits in the same position for many hours, the body responds naturally by slouching downwards. The body does this because it’s trying to settle into a position that does not make it work so hard. The spine begins to curve into a C shape and shoulders begin to hunch forward.
Nerves in the spinal column can get pinched as a result of sitting in a position that encourages poor posture. Neck pain, chronic back pain, arthritis and eyestrain are all problems caused by bad posture. Anyone who works in an office environment should maintain proper posture throughout the workday.
When proper posture is being practiced, shoulders will be aligned vertically with the body’s ears, the computer monitor will be high enough so that it can be seen by looking straight forward and the office chair should be high enough to keep thighs horizontal to the ground.
William Stevens is a writer who produces content in relation to the field of health in the workplace. This article promotes a healthy lifestyle as well as further study in this field, such as an Occupational Health and Safety Degree.