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Health 243 views Jan 07, 2020
How to deal with back problems when working in an office

In today’s modern society back problems have become a constant companion for most of us. Even if you don’t suffer from back pain, you must surely know at least one person who complains about this annoying issue or you might be at risk of becoming one of those persons yourself.

In our everyday rush from here to there, overwhelmed by the thought of being on top of everything all the time, we forget what is truly important – taking care of ourselves. Getting lost in the hectic rhythm of the modern world and adopting an unhealthy lifestyle forgive no one.

Chronic pain can have a huge impact on how we live and it can change the way we experience everything. Having to fight back problems can seriously diminish the quality of our lives and it can also affect the people around us.

Many people struggle to find a cause for their back problems when the answer might be quite simple. The most common cause of back pain is the prolonged time spent sitting on a chair. Of course, when working in an office this is inevitable, but there are right and wrong postures that can make the whole difference. 

Common mistakes

Working in an office involves sitting in front of a computer for hours. Through our daily routine we cause damage to our body without even realizing it. We might think we are doing everything right, but there are things that go unnoticed and in time they lead to unwanted health issues. There are a few mistakes that most of us are guilty of.

  • Leaning forward while using the computer – most people have a tendency to lean forward while they are focused on working at their computers. It’s a natural tendency that happens unconsciously and can cause a reduction in lung capacity. Since not enough oxygen reaches your body you will experience shallow breathing as a result.
  • Upright siting posture – although we’ve been told since childhood that this is the correct position when siting at a desk, apparently it’s not. Researchers have discovered that sitting upright at a 90 degree angle for a long time puts too much pressure on your spine. Leaning a bit backwards, at 135 degrees, seems to be the ideal position.
  • Holding the phone to your ear with your shoulder – we’ve probably all done this when multitasking. Holding your phone with your shoulder might not seem like a big deal, but when you repeat the action several times throughout the day, your neck and upper back muscles will suffer. 
  • Sitting for too long – yes, you need to sit at your desk when you work, but nobody is stopping you to get up and move a little from time to time. The body needs movement, we’re not build to be sedentary, so sitting for too long is going to affect your overall health.

Tips to help you fight back pain

You might not feel the consequences of having a bad posture at your desk right away, but the effect is cumulative. At some point in the future you’ll have to deal with the results of your bad habits. 

Fortunately, even if your job requires you to spend long hours in front of a computer, there are a few ways to minimize the risk of developing back problems:

  • Check your posture regularly – set an alarm on your phone to help you check your posture from time to time and correct it and stop you from developing bad habits.
  • Choose a good chair – an ergonomic chair that offers lumbar support will help you feel more comfortable during the long working hours and avoid lower back pain. 
  • Opt for a sit-stand desk – a converting desk has many benefits. You can choose how much time you spend sitting or standing without leaving your workspace. It’s a great way to break the routine of being tied up to your chair all the time. 
  • Adjust the position of your screen – the height of your computer screen should be at or a little below eye-level to avoid pressure on your neck and upper back.
  • Get a pair of headsets – to get rid of the habit of tucking the phone between your ear and your shoulder, consider buying a good pair of headsets that will free your hands and keep your neck muscles tension-free.
  • Move – take short breaks regularly to get up and move. Stretching from time to time can be really useful to combat the effects of sitting in the same position for too long.
  • Do some yoga – not at the office, of course. Studies have shown that yoga can help prevent and treat back pain, so now you know what you have to do in your spare time.
  • Massage – another effective and relaxing way to maintain a healthy spine is massage therapy. Depending on your specific needs, there are several types of massage that can help address your issues.

Why you should see a chiropractor

Chiropractors are highly trained professionals who use a variety of non-invasive techniques to alleviate muscles, bones and joints pain and that is why chiropractic methods are a good alternative if you suffer from back problems.

Most people who experience back pain choose to see a chiropractor first, before deciding to try other options like medical treatments or surgeries. That is because chiropractic is considered to be one of the safest ways to deal with acute back pain. 

While some medications might treat the symptoms, chiropractic care focuses on addressing the root cause of the problem. Besides, medical treatments also involve dealing with side effects that some people might want to avoid.

It’s also worth mentioning that chiropractors create personalized treatments for each individual, as there’s no one size fits all method, and they can also work in close collaboration with other healthcare specialist to devise the best treatment plan for their patients. 

Whatever route you decide to take in order to deal with the problems caused by spending long hours in the office, it’s important to be informed about your options and be consistent when undergoing a treatment.