6 Easy Tips to Ensure Better Neck and Back Health While You’re Working from Home

6 Easy Tips to Ensure Better Neck and Back Health While You’re Working from Home

Working from home has many advantages. For instance, there’s no sitting in traffic trying to get to the office on time. Another benefit of working at home is you can work at your favourite spot.

However, working from home has a few drawbacks as well. While you might enjoy working from your couch, the end of the day might leave you with a stiff neck. You might even have considered visiting a chiropractor Moorabbin locals visit often. Here’s your complete to do list for excellent results.

Don’t Neglect Your Neck When You’re Working from Home

Whether you work from home by choice or you were driven indoors by the pandemic, the reality is, most homes don’t have space for an office set-up. Many people working from home are either working on their kitchen tables, sitting on the couch or even in bed.

No matter where you’ve decided to create a make-shift office, chances are you’re not sitting in the most comfortable position. While you might have given up the daily commute, you might have gained a sore back and neck. But, if working remotely is something you need to do, what can you do to avoid it being a pain in the neck?

6 Important Changes to Make Today

1.     Comfortable Workstation

While your budget or space might not allow for the ergonomic furniture you’re accustomed to at the office, it’s advisable to use the most supportive furniture in your home. If possible, create a workstation with a supportive chair that gives your whole back support.

Set your screen up at a comfortable viewing height. You shouldn’t look down at your screen. You also shouldn’t have to bend your neck to read your screen. Something as simple as a pile of books on your table can easily elevate your laptop or screen to the right height.

2.     Get a Foot Support

If the place you’re sitting at doesn’t allow for your feet to touch the floor, create a footrest. You can get creative and use a box or cushion. Your feet shouldn’t dangle in the air or be folded under the chair. It might feel comfortable, but it puts added pressure on your thighs and restricts blood flow to your calves and feet. This puts you at risk of developing deep vein thrombosis.

3.     Put Your Devices at a Comfortable Height

If your workstation raises your laptop or PC so that you can see the screen without scrounging your neck, it’s a good idea to use a separate keyboard and mouse. Often raising the screen puts the keyboard at a position that adds pressure to your wrists.

You should be able to use your keyboard and mouse while your forearms and hands are level and straight. Using your mouse should put your arm close to the side of your body. Having to stretch to use your mouse result in nerve compression and neck strain. This happens because the nerves in your hand run straight up to your neck.

4.     Align Your Screen Sideways to a Bright Window

One of the most common ailments computer users often experience is eye strain or partial retinal adaption. This is created when the user works with their screen facing a window, so the light coming in creates a glare on the screen.

Ideally, your screen should be perpendicular to the window. Or, if your window has blinds, don’t keep them fully open. Working on a glass surface can also cause reflected glare, so cover your glass table with a tablecloth. Use a light tablecloth as one that’s too thick might cause your laptop to heat up.

5.     Don’t Turn Your Bed into an Office

The thought of working in bed might sound like everyone’s dream office, but it’s actually worse than an uncomfortable chair! The main reason for this is that you’ll most likely cross your legs or stretch them out completely to rest your laptop on.

Firstly, doing that puts your laptop too low for optimal screen viewing, which means you more than likely have your neck hunched forward. Secondly, it places pressure on the nerves in your legs. If your bed is the only quiet space in your home, invest in a laptop table that fits on your bed. Remember to place a pillow behind your back for support.

6.     Consider Options that Minimise Typing

A great way to give your wrists, arms and hands time to rest during work sessions is to consider completing emails via voice recognition or voice notes.

If you need to make several calls throughout the day, invest in a headset. This will allow you to use the phone while walking around and stretching your muscles.

Final Thought

Always start your morning with a few stretches and warm-up exercises. That will prepare your body for a strenuous day in your home office. Consider ways to make your home office space (no matter how small it is) user-friendly. Be sure to change your space when your body feels uncomfortable. With some trial and error, you’ll eventually get the perfect comfort level. Don’t let working at home become a pain!

John Norwood
John Norwood is best known as a technology journalist, currently at Ziddu where he focuses on tech startups, companies, and products.