Health Care Lifestyle

Creating an Ergonomic Workspace To Improve Performance and Quality of Life

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Back pain is one of the most common health issues faced by desk workers today. Whether it's a dull ache or sharp pain, it can significantly impact productivity and quality of life. Prolonged sitting, poor posture, and an inadequate workspace setup are often the causes of these preventable aches and pains. Understanding the causes and taking proactive steps can make a significant difference in your musculoskeletal health and your overall performance at work! This article was developed to bring you tips and tricks in creating a more ergonomically friendly environment for both your at-home and/or at-work workspaces. Continue reading and learn how to bring your best self to work!

Possible causes of Office-Related Back and Neck Pain:

  • Poor Posture: Slouching or sitting in a non-ergonomic position can strain your back muscles.
  • Prolonged Sitting: Staying seated for long periods of time can lead to stiffness and discomfort and can promote an unhealthy sedentary lifestyle.
  • Inadequate Office Furniture: Using non-ergonomic chairs and desks can contribute to poor posture, back pain, and neck pain.
  • Inefficient Desktop Layout: Overreaching, overarching, craning neck, or bending in non-natural positions can put you at risk for strains and pain overtime.

Follow these tips to create a more ergonomic office space:

  1. Set up your chair:
    • Consider an ergonomic chair that supports the natural curve of your spine.
    • Ensure the chair height allows your feet to rest flat on the floor and your knees to be at a 90-degree angle.

  2. Set up your desk:
    • Keep your keyboard and mouse within easy reach to prevent overreaching.

  3. Monitor:
    • Place the monitor directly in front of you at an arm's length distance.
    • The top of the screen should be at or slightly below eye level.
    • Make sure your monitor is readable to avoid straining your neck.

  4. Take Regular Breaks:
    • Stand up and stretch every 30 minutes to an hour.
    • Incorporate short walks throughout the day to keep your muscles active.

  5. Use Proper Lighting:
    • Ensure that your workspace is well-lit to reduce eye strain.

  6. Other considerations:
    • Consider using a footrest to support your feet if you can’t reach the floor.
    • Use document holders to keep papers at eye level.

Once you have utilized all these tips in your current workspace and back pain persists despite ergonomic adjustments, it might be time to consult a Chiropractor. Luckily, Chiropractors are here to help in this area and are highly trained to diagnose and treat musculoskeletal issues, including back and neck pain.

Taking proactive steps to create an ergonomic office environment and seeking professional help, when necessary, can greatly reduce episodes of back pain and improve your overall well-being and performance in and out of work. Consider these tips and tricks to create a better workstation for yourself and to help prevent pain in the future!

If you’d like to schedule an ergonomic workspace assessment or a chiropractic appointment with our Chiropractor at the Whole Health Institute, call Call913-632-3550 to schedule your visit!

About the Author

Amina Karim, DC

Dr. Amina Karim is an experienced chiropractor committed to enhancing the musculoskeletal health of individuals through personalized care. Her treatment style combines chiropractic techniques with various modalities. Common modalities she uses include muscle stimulation, therapeutic ultrasound, flexion distraction, and cupping therapy. To help patients continue with progress beyond the office, she regularly educates them on homecare and overall wellness.

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