If you are someone who sits at a desk for the bulk of the workweek, you probably already know that sitting too much can cause lower back pain and other types of pain. Short of quitting your job, you could wonder if there is anything that you can do to help you eliminate this pain. Luckily, there are a few tips that you can follow that can help you be more comfortable.
1. Practice Good Posture
First of all, you should know that posture is very important. It’s important at any time, but it’s particularly important if you find yourself sitting in the same position in your desk chair for hours on end, day in and day out.
When sitting at your desk all day, make sure that you sit up tall and straight. Also, make sure that sit close to your keyboard so that you aren’t straining and reaching too far ahead of you while you’re working.
2. Try Different Chairs
Along with focusing on using the correct posture, you also want to make sure that you have the right office chair. After all, when sitting at your computer, you might find yourself sitting in your office chair for long periods of time, making comfort important.
An ergonomic office chair that is designed to support the lumbar spine can help a lot. For many people, this provides the best back support and comfort. If you find that an office chair makes you uncomfortable, however, you can try other options. For example, a kneeling desk or standing desk might help provide you with some relief as well.
Along with choosing the right chair, you will also want to make sure that you adjust it properly. Make sure that the height is appropriate for your desk so that you can reach your keyboard without having to strain. Additionally, make sure that the back is straight and that the headrest is adjusted to suit your height.
3. Stand Up Regularly
When you get a chance, take the opportunity to stand up for a few minutes at various times throughout the workday. Even just standing up while you are talking on the phone or taking a brisk walk around the building on your lunch break can help. Not only can this help with the back pain, but it can also help you maintain your weight as well.
Even when you aren’t able to get up and walk around, it is a good idea to at least stand up and stretch a few times a day. This can provide you with relief from some of the pain and can help prevent pain as well.
4. Keep Your Feet Flat
Even though you might be tempted to cross your legs or otherwise sit in a “comfortable” position, you might find that you regret it later. Even though it might seem comfortable to sit this way at first, it can cause strain on your back and the rest of your body. Plus, it can reduce circulation in your legs and can cause your legs and feet to “fall asleep,” which is obviously uncomfortable. For best results, focus on keeping your feet flat on the floor when you’re working.
5. Hold the Phone Properly
It can be easy to cradle the phone against your shoulder while you’re at work. Then, you can focus on working on your computer or doing other things while you’re talking on the phone. However, this is a bad habit to get into. This can put a lot of strain on your neck and upper back, so make sure that you get into the habit of holding the phone properly while you’re chatting on it.
6. Stay Active When You Aren’t at Work
Even though you might feel tired and ready to relax when you get off of work each day, it’s a good idea to make an effort to exercise when you can. Exercising just a few times a week can help you with weight management, which is a good thing, since added weight can contribute to weight gain. It can also help you ease back pain. Even just walking or swimming can help you stay active outside of work hours when you work an office job.
7. See Your Doctor
You might not think that your back pain is really worth addressing with a doctor. However, scheduling an appointment can help you ensure that there is not a serious problem that needs to be addressed. Plus, your doctor might be able to provide tips to help you eliminate and prevent pain, such as prescribing a pain medication or recommending that you go to a chiropractor.
As you can see, even though back pain is a common problem for people who work in an office setting, it isn’t something that you have to deal with. If you follow these tips, you should be able to cut down on your work-related back pain and prevent back pain in the future.