Many people who usually work in an office suddenly found themselves working from home when the COVID-19 epidemic hit, and they may not have had time to create a home workspace that is conducive to their health.
This has, unfortunately, resulted in an increase in musculoskeletal symptoms such as joint pain, neck pain, and chronic back pain.
Fortunately, we have some excellent news for people who experience muscle pain when working from home and actively seek alleviation from that pain.
Making even minor adjustments to your working conditions can significantly help manage chronic pain.
Here are some tips to keep your body from aching while you’re working from home:
Common aches and pains while working from home
Sitting in one place for long periods, such as at a desk or dining room table, can cause everyday aches and pains.
These problems may manifest initially as annoyances when doing daily activities, but if left unchecked, they can cause serious health consequences.
Some frequent aches and pains to look out for include:
When working from home, back discomfort is the most common complaint. Sitting for eight or more hours at a time is unnatural for the human body and can negatively impact one’s posture.
Back discomfort is a common complaint among students because of the strain that forward bending and slouching put on the spinal cord.
Discomfort in the Neck
Working from home makes it easy to get neck and shoulder pain from constantly craning your neck and hunching your shoulders forward to look at the screen.
Wrist pain and tenderness are common workplace complaints among those who spend long periods using a computer keyboard and mouse.
What exactly is ergonomics?
You’ve probably heard the word “ergonomic” thrown about if you’ve ever worked in an office. This field of study involves tailoring the layout of public and private spaces to the specific requirements of those who will be using them; your own home is no exception.
Ergonomics is the study of how to work more effectively and with less fatigue, pain, and injury. Ergonomics aims to optimize the usage of desks, seats, and computers to promote a healthy workplace as computer use grows in the workplace.
The field of ergonomics also considers the urge to get up and move around during the workday.
In light of this information, let’s discuss some ways to lessen the discomfort of working at home:
How to stay pain-free
1. Sit in a chair with enough support
Since you will be spending a lot of time in your chair, it’s crucial that it provides sufficient back support, armrests, and legroom under your desk so that you can stretch out comfortably to stimulate blood flow.
You may ensure that you get this support by investing in an ergonomic chair.
Both feet should be touching the floor while seated in your chair. If that’s not an option, try setting a box or stool on the floor.
Maintain a neutral spine by keeping your knees and hips at 90-degree angles. In this position, your neck and back may rest easily, which reduces tension and fatigue.
2. Buy an ergonomic keyboard
When working on a computer from home, you’ll inevitably use a keyboard and mouse. Although these accessories can appear unimportant, improper use might cause wrist pain.
Keep your arms at shoulder height while you type to keep your wrists in a natural position. You can avoid injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome by doing this.
The wrist rests on ergonomic keyboards helping users to type with more comfort.
If you want to avoid making weird shoulder motions, positioning your mouse close to the keyboard and using a mouse pad that provides wrist support are also good ideas.
3. Set your computer up properly
To avoid slouching over your laptop, keep it at eye level. This hunched-over position increases the risk of neck and head pain.
Either set your computer on a box or invest in a laptop stand. The crucial thing is to ensure that you can see straight ahead at your monitor while keeping your keyboard and mouse in the positions mentioned above.
In addition to placing your monitor at a suitable working height, you should tilt it away from the window by ninety degrees to reduce glare.
Shoulder and back pain might be alleviated by adjusting your work chair.
4. Take frequent, short breaks
Every 30 minutes is a good target for a quick break during the workday. Simple exercises like stretching, walking around the block, or even going up and down a flight of stairs will help you stay fit without requiring much effort.
By keeping your body in motion throughout the day, you can ease the discomfort and stiffness in achy muscles and joints.
Again, you do not perform a full aerobic workout during these intervals. Avoiding discomfort while working from home is as simple as getting up every now and then to use the restroom, refill your water bottle, or make another cup of coffee.
5. Alternate tasks frequently
Repetitive motion injuries and muscular fatigue are more likely to occur when you perform the same tasks repeatedly over long periods of time.
Your risk of a wrist injury, for example, increases if you use a computer keyboard for long periods every day.
It would be best if you took numerous breaks during the day to accomplish other things, such as getting up from your desk to make a phone call (and standing up!).
By introducing more variety into your normal activities, you can ensure that different muscle groups are being used and that weary muscles get a chance to recover.
Home-based work can be a real pain
There are countless methods available that can reduce back pain while working from home, but the best method for you may not be the same as for someone else. Try a few different approaches to decide what works best for you.
Self-massage techniques cannot be considered an alternative treatment. If you still suffer from pain while working from home, it may be time to see a physiotherapist. Getting a physiotherapy treatment can be an effective treatment.
Learn how our registered massage therapists in Markham can create a treatment plan that can help you improve your health and productivity while working from home.