Change the Way You Work at Your Desk and End Back Pain

 

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A little awareness of how you work at your desk and some minor adjustments can end that nagging back pain.

  1. Try to keep your head and neck aligned above your shoulders. This may take some practice, as we commonly hang our head forward to see computer monitors. Known as vulture neck, this can lead to consistent back pain over time.
  2. Don’t reach too far for your mouse. Keep it close to your keyboard. The overreach, combined with insistent clicking of the mouse button, transfers pain from arm, to shoulder, to back.
  3. Use a lumbar back support on your desk chair. That added support prevents chair slump. You can also get supports with cooling and heating features for extra comfort.9190001_Hero_072210.png
  4. Breathe for your back. Try these breathing exercises every now and then while sitting at your desk. Take deep breaths from your stomach muscles, think of sucking your belly button toward your spine. This strengthens core muscles that weaken from excessive sitting.
  5. Make sure you are the right distance from your monitor. Hunching forward is bad, as is reaching for your keyboard from far off. Try to be about 2-3 inches away.
  6. Keep feet planted. Crossing feet at the ankles or resting a foot on a file cabinet will eventually put strain on your back muscles. Keep feet flat on the floor and about shoulder width apart.
  1. Take a break. Just moving around every 15-20 minutes helps circulation.
  1. Don’t cross your legs. This position creates tension in your legs that translates into back pain.
  1. The infamous phone cradle. Don’t cradle your phone on your shoulder. Even though you may do this infrequently, eventually this awkward position strains neck, shoulder and back muscles.

Three Must Have Comfort Products for Your Home Office for the New Year

If you are thinking about upgrading your home office, here are some products to help improve comfort, productivity and just make your workspace a nicer place to be.

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Adding personal comfort touches

Yes, we can work in our pajamas, but no we shouldn’t slouch. Often the home office space leads to poor posture and all the discomforts we would normally associate with working at the corporate office. Here are some personal comfort touches that can help keep you happy at your home workstation.

Attach a back support to your desk chair. More than just a cushion for your lower back, back rests can encourage correct posture so you can sit properly and won’t feel that sudden tinge of pain when you get up from your desk. You can also find some back rests with heating and cooling properties.

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Back rest that cools and warms while you sit.

Use a foot rest to help with overall comfort. We may be bending or placing or feet in uncomfortable positions as we work, unconsciously of course, which can lead to leg and ankle pain later on. A foot rest ensures the correct positioning of your feet while you are at your home office workstation. Some foot rests rock to circulate blood flow. Also you can choose foot rests with heating and cooling features, especially useful for home office spaces with wild temperature swings throughout the year.

 

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Climate Control Foot Rest Review: “I always have cold feet, it’s so bad sometimes that I have to sit on my feet to warm them up. But then I get leg cramps. This foot rest keeps my feet and calves nice and toasty warm!!!”

 

Keeping it Plush

We may not realize that the pain we feel in our elbow is directly related to our mouse usage. Replacing your standard mouse pad with a mouse pad with wrist support can help reduce the stress and the pain for every day mousing.

Using an innovative FoamFusion Technology, the Plush Touch Wrist Support delivers superior comfort and softness while relieving wrist pressure.

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Plush Touch with Foam Fusion

The Plush Touch design is also available for keyboards, offering the same softness and comfort to prevent wrist pains caused by continuous typing.

A great feature for both the Plush Touch pad for mouse and keyboard is the Microban protection that helps keep the surface cleaner. The Plush Touch pad is also laser mouse friendly.

Home Office Makeovers Made Easy

Is it Time for a Home Office Makeover?

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Working at home can lead to the dilemma of “getting used” to your surroundings. You may not realize how issues of comfort , lighting, noise and organization are affecting your performance.  Much like reading in dim light, you don’t realize how much easier it is to read the page until someone flings back the curtains.

Comfort

Making your home office comfortable may seem like a no-brainer, but we are far too likely to compromise and adapt to uncomfortable chairs and awkward work spaces.  Make sure your chair fits you and not the other way around, and  take the time to notice if back pain or leg pain are becoming too common. Choosing the proper foot and back support for home office work stations can help. If you work at a laptop, setting it at the proper angle can prevent strain in wrists and hands. Even excessive use of your tablet can cause strain on your wrists. Use wrist and keyboard supports if you are working long term at the computer.   Use document holders so you are  not peering down at papers on your desk while typing.

Lighting

Poor lighting can cause you adapt by squinting. Lots of sunshine may seem like a good thing, except that it may be causing screen glare on your computer without you realizing it. Make sure  you have adequate lighting for both day and night work.  Also, be aware of your environment throughout the day  to see if the change in natural light is not going from gorgeous to glaring.

Noise Issues

Keeping a quiet work area can be difficult at home, especially with kids home for summer.  Making quiet time rules during your work hours helps you not only get work done in peace but also helps structure your time with the kids.

Organization

Staying organized can sometimes be harder at home where expectations of organization are not as strict as in an office setting. Ensure your files and desktop don’t degrade into clutter. Take time at the end of each work day to evaluate your clutter ratio and fix it then and there before it gets worse.

Breathing Room

Comfort sometimes can be invisible. Like the air in your home office. Make sure you are not situated under a vent circulating dusty air in an enclosed space.  This is especially important if you suffer from allergies. Change your air filters and use air purifiers if necessary so you are not contributing to a sick office at home.