If working from home is the new norm for you, there are a lot of factors that can affect your performance. Many may find themselves working from home in work spaces that are much more uncomfortable than the traditional business office. We’ve found that a lot of our patients are at home, working from laptops and looking down while sitting for hours. This is can lead to back pain, neck pain, muscle soreness and even headaches.
Tips for Working at Home:
- Check your Screen Height – Moving your screen in line with your vision so that your neck is not bent forward will take tension off of your neck and back and help improve your posture while sitting. This can be done by using a separate screen or a wireless mouse/keyboard or moving your laptop up higher.
- Get up and stretch every 20 – 30 minutes. If you are stuck sitting in one place for long periods of time, set a reminder alarm on your phone to help you remember to stand up and stretch periodically.
- Keep your hips and knees at a right angle. Use a foot rest or stool if necessary. Your regular, comfy at home office chair may not provide comfort or good posture positioning for long periods of time. Try using a kitchen or dining room chair to help improve your posture and spine alignment.
- Stand as much as you can. Try standing or pacing during phone calls and stand as much as you can during your work day and during breaks.
- Remove/reduce the blue light coming from your monitor. Changing the Blue Light Filter on your monitor is often an option available in the Settings Menu of your device. Night light settings are typically used to adjust the level of blue displayed. Removing or reducing the blue light from your monitor and phone can help with eye pain and headaches.
Next Steps: Take a moment during your work today to notice if your shoulders are rounding, head has moved forward and upper back is hunched over. If you feel yourself slouching into this posture, let us know. We would love to provide you with some exercises you can do while working to help strengthen the muscles supporting your spine and combat these muscle imbalances. We have Telehealth or In-Office visits available now! And the first Telehealth appointment is free.
If those tactics don’t keep you moving, try these simple movements from Forbes.com (2) that you can do at your desk:
– Invisible Chair Sit: Start by lowering your seat as far as it will go. Stand in front of your chair with your feet hip’s width apart. Place your hands on your hips (or out in front of you) and lower your butt until it’s just above the seat. Then sit down as slowly as possible. Do 20 repetitions.
– Carpal Tunnel Reliever: Stand at your desk, and, arms straight, place your palms on the desk with your fingers pointed toward you. Lower your body slowly until you feel the stretch and hold for 10-15 seconds.
– Wooden Leg: Sit in your chair and extend one leg out straight in front of you. Hold for two seconds then raise it up as high as you can, and hold it again for two seconds. Repeat with each leg.
– Sitting Spinal Stretch: Sit tall in your chair, and stretch your arms toward the ceiling. Put your left hand on the desk, grab the back of the chair with your right hand and twist to the right. Hold for 10 seconds. Release and raise your arms toward the ceiling again. Then repeat the twist going the other way. Hold for 10 seconds.
– The Little Mermaid at Work: Sit upright in your chair. Hold your right wrist over your head with your left hand and pull it, stretching your right side. Return to upright posture. Take hold of your left wrist over your head with your right hand and stretch the other way. Repeat five times on each side.
Regardless of the tactics, the underlying principle is the same: get up and move more often. It’s easy to get caught up in work or television and find yourself sitting in the same position for hours at a time, but doing so presents a laundry list of health issues. However, with a small amount of awareness and a little preparation, you can escape the side-effects of idleness and start feeling the benefits of an active lifestyle.
Do you sit all day long and feel it could be detrimental to your health? Take the first step to reclaiming your health and request a consultation in the form below.
If you’re curious about seeing a chiropractor, but you’re not quite sure if it’s for you, then this article on the benefits of chiropractic care is for you.
Long days at the office may be killing you, according to a new study conducted by Active Working Community Interest Company and the U.K. Department of Health.
More and more employees are sitting at their desks for long periods of time. This can wreak havoc on your spine, but even worse, it can cause premature death. Experts recommend making sure you get up often and walk around. This allows your legs to stretch out and the blood flow through your body. The longer you choose to sit still, the higher the chances you will start to experience musculoskeletal pain.
In order to combat this issue in workplaces, stand up and work more often. By choosing a sit/stand workstation, you won’t have the same effects as if you sat at a desk all day. You also want to talk to your chiropractor about certain treatments that can be done to help keep your spine and other muscles flexible. If your job demands that you sit at a desk all day, you want to work with a chiropractor to keep your body limber.
Back Pain and Fatigue
Back pain is a common problem of those who tend to sit for long periods of time. This can happen both at the workplace and at home where you sit in front of the TV for hours. In order to get relief from the back pain, a chiropractor can work with your body to help it heal itself. A chiropractor uses spinal manipulation to help get the body back into its natural position. They don’t just eliminate the symptoms but they get to the root of the problem.
Get Off Your Medication
For those who suffer from back pain, pain relievers are a common go-to treatment. Unfortunately, some medications have harmful side effects that can actually be worse than the back pain. The longer you take the medicine, the risks tend to increase. When you choose an alternative method of treatment like chiropractic care, you do not have to worry about harmful medications. Many medications only mask the problem and do not get to the root of the problem. This is why many people who suffer from back pain get addicted to the medication because they are so used to taking it.
Working with a chiropractor allows you to get an accurate diagnosis of your pain. Because chiropractors are doctors and spend many years in school learning about back pain and what causes it, you can feel confident you will be able to come away with answers. Some chiropractors will choose to perform diagnostic testing to make sure there are not bigger issues than just sitting for prolonged periods of time.
Due to their experience, they can also recommend preventative measures so you do not experience back pain in the future. One way to avoid back pain from prolonged sitting is by getting a back support. Many office chairs do not provide the proper support for employees. It is important to find a chair that works for you. This can make a huge difference in the way your back feels day after day. Your chiropractor can also work with your employer to discuss other ways to help keep you moving. They can access your job and form alternative ways to get it done without having to sit for long periods of time.
When you have a position that requires you to sit for a length of time, you need to visit your chiropractor before you begin to experience pain. The long hours of sitting could be harming your back without you even knowing it. This will help reduce and possibly eliminate any back pain from occurring.