If you work at a desk all day, you are at risk of experiencing some level of back pain in your job. While it may begin as an annoying ache in your back, it can turn into a debilitating problem that could keep you home from work, and may even require surgery or visits to a place like Bronx Physical Therapy LLP to fix. The following tips will help you keep your back healthy while at work and avoid potentially nagging back pain.
Keep Your Head Up and Eyes Forward
When working on a computer, people often find themselves looking down with head and neck slumped forward to see the monitor. This puts an unnatural curve in your spine with stress on your abdominal muscles and the muscles alongside of the spine. Raise your monitor so you are looking at it straight ahead of you. This will force your head to raise up and your neck and back to take on a better posture.
Create a Comfortable Reach for Your Mouse
Some people have their mouse located toward the back of the computer so they have to stretch to reach it. This stretching motion puts stress on your shoulder and a slight rotation of the spine. This muscle strain while rotating the spine can be enough to cause upper back and neck pain. Slide your mouse back next to the keyboard so you don't have to reach for your mouse.
Adjust Your Chair
Office chairs may not have the most ergonomic designs. They often cause your hips and pelvis to shift slightly forward in the chair. This causes your lower back to have little to no support. Gradually, the muscles in your lower back will be stressed as they try to hold your back straight without the support. The result is lower back pain which rarely gets better on its own.
There are two ways to prevent this:
- find a chair that has a good lumbar support
- buy a lumber support device for your existing chair
In either case, adjust your chair so it leans back slightly. This forces your lower back to rest against the lumber support which takes the stress off of your lower back.
Move Your Feet
Your feet and legs put additional strain on your back muscles if they aren't positioned correctly. If your feet dangle from the chair, barely touching the floor, they pull on your back muscles. If they rest with your knees higher than your pelvis, it places your lower back in an unnatural position. Sit with your feet flat on the floor and slightly apart, upper legs perpendicular to your spine. Adjust the chair, if necessary, or buy a foot rest to take the stress off of your back.
Pay attention to how your body is positioned at work. With just a little effort, you can prevent any back pain from happening.