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Is Your Posture at Work Actually Killing You?

Modern life has brought about significant changes to how we work and live.  Today many people now spend a considerable part of their working hours sitting in front of a computer. While the sedentary life has become the norm, most people don’t know the correct sitting position, and this can lead to several problems such as back pain, shoulder pain, and wrist pain. If prolonged sitting in front of a computer is causing these problems for your health, it’s important that you visit a chiropractic office in your area regularly.

However, it’s also essential for you to know the proper sitting position while using a computer to prevent these pains from happening in the first place or at the very least reduce the symptoms if you already have such conditions.  New research is now stating that a sedentary lifestyle has the same negative health affects as smoking.

Focus on the three main areas of your posture stated below to forestall any problems while sitting at your computer for long hours.

The Lower Back

Your lower back provides support for the skeleton below your stomach, making it essential to keep it in the correct position. Here are some of the ways to achieve this:

•    While sitting, always keep your back straight.

•    Sit with your hips as far into the chair as possible, in essence, make your hips touch the back of the chair.

•    Always keep your feet flat on the floor

•    Make your knees a bit lower than your hips. This is easier if you have a chair with right height.

•    Keep the reclining angle of the chair at 100 to 110 degrees.



The Shoulders 

Make sure the position of your shoulders is neutral. Misaligned shoulders can strain your neck and upper back muscles, leading to pain. To prevent suffering from painful and sore muscles in the neck and upper back region, you can do the following:

•    Keep your shoulders and back aligned.

•    Make sure your back is never slouched forward.

•    Align your neck with the shoulder, and ensure that your neck doesn’t stay in a forward position for extended periods.

•    Allow your shoulders to rest naturally; don’t force them downwards or hold them up.

The Hands and Fingers

Poor placement of these extremities can impact them negatively. While using keyboards, typing places tremendous strain on our fingers, and we may also position our wrists below the level of the keyboard, making our elbows rest far below the keyboard and our wrist level. These positions can wreak havoc on the health of the bones and muscles found in the wrist and elbows and can cause serious damage if left uncorrected for too long.

To prevent your wrists and arms from developing painful health conditions, use the following recommendations:

•    Place the keypad directly in front of your body and near you.

•    Keep your elbows open.

•    Ensure there is nothing to impede your elbows' movement around your desk.

•    Avoid resting your wrists on the keyboard while typing. However, this can be tiring, but you can wear wristpads to cushion your wrists so that they don’t rest directly on the keyboard. Be sure to keep your wrists aligned with the back of your palm always.

The above recommendations show that sitting correctly in front of a computer isn’t rocket science. By following these instructions, sitting for long hours in front of a computer shouldn’t be so painful anymore. However, you should visit a chiropractor if symptoms persist.  Poor posture while sitting at a computer can cause more than musculoskeletal symptoms.  At our office we have had patients who suffer from lung related problems such as asthma and heart related conditions such as high blood pressure and atrial fibrillation due to postural distortions from bad computer ergonomics. 

So, if you work at a computer or know someone who does, you need to schedule your chiropractic assessment to see if your computer posture is having detrimental effects on your health and posture. The experienced and friendly chiropractors at Somerset Hills Chiropractic are happy to share more information about the health benefits of chiropractic adjustments and answer any questions you may have. To schedule an appointment, please call (908) 221-0808.


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