Tips for Good Health at Office

Several studies point to the harmful effects, short and long term, of a sedentary office work. Sitting for more than eight hours a day increases the risk of death by 15%.

Adopting a good working position will prevent you from pain in the back, neck or wrist which can be bothersome or even disabling. To behave well means first of all not to be twisted in front of his workstation but to stand well in front of him, legs uncrossed so that the blood circulates as well as possible. The feet should be flat on the ground and the back, neither too slumped nor too straight, well supported on the seat.

The position of the screen is also important: it should be fixed so that its top edge is at eye level. It is the ideal position to avoid raising the chin or lowering the head too much, “positions which generate pain in the neck when they are repeated”, warn physiologists.

Finally, to avoid the painful carpal tunnel syndrome, it is important not to lean too long on the inside of the wrist, which is rich in tendons that compress the nerve when it inflames. Holding your mouse at a right angle to your body or in front of you, with your elbow resting on the table, is the ideal position. The worst thing, however, is stretching out your arm to hold the mouse, or resting only your wrist on the table. “Contrary to popular belief, the wrist rest for the mouse is absolutely useless,” says the expert.

Take care of your eyes. No study has shown any impact of screen work on long-term vision. But looking alternately and constantly at areas at different distances – the screen, the keyboard and sometimes a document – is a great strain on the eyes. This visual fatigue can decrease the vision momentarily, while the eye is resting, but also generate tingling, headaches, dry eyes … Unless you take typing lessons, it is difficult to do other! But it is possible to limit breakage by avoiding placing your desk in front of a window, which would create too much brightness contrast between the screen and its background, or on the contrary facing a wall. In this case, the eye cannot rest while looking into the distance. Finally, it is necessary to regularly stop working on the computer.

Get up for five minutes every hour. Sedentary work is a real scourge. According to a recent American study, sitting for eight hours a day increases the risk of dying prematurely by 15%. Remaining static hinders blood circulation: the heart rate slows down, the muscles are less well supplied … Less solicited, muscles, bones, tendons and ligaments are also more fragile. To avoid these inconveniences, it is important to get up and take a break of about five minutes every hour. The use of a seat with a removable backrest also allows you to move regularly while remaining seated. In the United States, some companies in Silicon Valley have adopted the “sit-stand desk”, which is higher than the regular desk and which allows for more frequent switching from a sitting position to a standing position. If these offices are efficient, they are still not very widespread in France: 95% of the offices remain traditional positions.

Walk or pedal to work. “Sleeping well, eating well and playing sports, this is the winning trio for maintaining good health.

Avoid having lunch at your desk. Eating in front of the screen has the disadvantages of staying static, losing concentration … Above all, we pay less attention to what we swallow … and then nibble. “When you eat fast, you don’t have time to feel full. The feeling of satiety only occurs after about a quarter of an hour. And when you eat in front of your computer, it’s worse: you don’t even pay attention to what you swallow, explain physicians. However, the lunch break is shrinking. While employees willingly stopped over an hour and a half to eat in the 1990s, they now do not spend more than 22 minutes on average in this ritual. Still according to Malakoff Médéric, 46% of employees and 55% of those under 30 today state that they snack between meals. Bad news when you know it’s a  factor of obesity …

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