Proper Workplace Ergonomics
Computer usage has been responsible for a number of health problems in human body like repetitive strain injury, neck pain and muscle spasms, shoulder and back pain, pan and numbness in the fingers and hands, leg and ankle pains, amongst a host of other problems. The following are some good workstation ergonomics that will help prevent these problems due to long term computer usage. A combination of proper workplace ergonomics and a chiropractic wellness plan from our Irvine chiropractor, Dr. Gary Martin, will ensure you are set up for a pain-free and productive workday.
It’s important that you have a good ergonomic chair that allows you to maintain proper body posture and optimal support to your neck, back, shoulders, arms, legs, buttocks, legs and feet. Most ergonomic chairs have adjustable knobs or levers to adjust the height and tilt of the seat, the tilt of the back support, and the height of the arm supports. You should be able to maintain a comfortable, erect posture by keeping your back rested against the back support of the chair. Your feet should be able to rest flat on the floor (or using a footrest), Overall your body should be straight with your forearms and thighs parallel to the floor. Adjust the armrests so your shoulders are relaxed and arms are gently resting. Your hands and wrists should be straight while using the keyboard.
Ideally, there should be enough clearance for you to position your knees and thighs as recommended above. For desks that are too low, raise it using blocks or sturdy boards. If your desk is too high, raise your chair- if your feet don't rest flat on the floor, get a footrest to support your feet.
Keyboard and Mouse
Ideally, your keyboard and mouse should be placed on a tray under the desktop. Elbows should remain close to your body, with straight wrists. Use a wrist rest that is integral with the mouse pad can reduce the strain on your arms and wrists. If you are dexterous enough, switch the hand you use to operate your mouse periodically.
Position your monitor and keyboard in the center of your body so you don’t have to twist your torso. The top of the monitor should be an inch or two above the top of your head. You should not have to raise or lower your head when viewing the monitor. Ideally, only your eyes should have to move.
Other ways to make the work station more comfortable
Make space- You should have enough area to spread out and stretch your arm and hand muscles. You should arrange your work space to make your working easier and minimize reaching. Only keep the necessary items on your desktop to eliminate clutter.
Proper Lighting- Typical fluorescent office lighting can sometimes create eyestrain and makes viewing of the monitor difficult. Installation of an anti-glare glass panel or changing the angle of the monitor can help avoid reflections.
Use Phone Headsets- Many people who work on phone and computer at the same time will cradle the phone in between the neck and shoulder and start working on the computer. This strains the neck muscles and can misalign the spine and cause irritation to the nerves that go to the upper back and shoulders, and into the arms and hands. If you need to use the phone and the computer at the same time, you can avoid unnecessary strains by using a phone headset while keeping your hands free while using the computer.
Contact Us Today to Schedule Your Initial Evaluation
Contact Dr. Gary Martin, our Irvine Chiropractor to learn more about how we can help. Call our office at (949) 559-7999 or request an appointment online today.