Whether you are a student or a working professional, the amount of time we spend sitting at a desk has significantly increased due to the pandemic. It is not only difficult emotionally, but physically for millions of people to work from home while socially isolating themselves. Some of us may be fortunate enough to have dedicated work from home offices, but for most of us are working in tight quarters fighting for space at the dining room table, slouched in bed or on the couch… No wonder our bodies are in pain after a long workday.
Here are some tips and tricks that you can implement to manage joint pain and arthritis flare-ups while working from home:
Try not to work from your bed
We are all victims of it. While working from the bed may seem more comfortable, it is detrimental to your spine and posture. Good posture helps to relieve back pain as well as neck and shoulder strain. Additionally, managing sleep hygiene is very important to our overall health. When we work in bed, the boundaries between sleep, work, and leisure are blurred. As a result, it becomes very difficult to fall asleep at night. The bedroom should be solely left for bedtime only!
Schedule in basic stretching exercises at home
Make a habit of performing basic stretching exercises at home on a regular basis. Get up and move about every 20 to 30 minutes and create a habit of often shifting your posture. Some people like to do this in the morning, while others prefer to do it in the evening. Find out what works best for you and incorporate it into your everyday routine.
Arrange a healthy workspace
Office ergonomics matter. Make changes to your workstation to accommodate your specific demands and arthritis-related constraints. These adjustments, many of which can be made while working from home, help aid in the prevention of tiredness and joint discomfort caused by spending too much time in unhealthy postures. Try the following to improve your workspace:
- Position your computer monitor such that you do not have to glance up or down - Tilting your head to view a too-high screen strains the neck. Eyes should be level with the top of the screen. The center should be 15 degrees below your line of sight and approximately an arm’s length away.
- Maintain a straight upper back and relaxed shoulders - Throughout the day make sure to check in and see if your ears are creeping up towards your shoulders.
- Keep your arms supported - Make sure the armrests on your chair are adjustable. Set them up so that your upper and lower arms create a 90-degree angle, and your wrists and fingers are relaxed.
- Plant your feet flat on the floor - If your feet don't reach the floor easily, use a footrest.
Joint discomfort and stiffness happen as a result of limited mobility. Make your health a priority and don't put off seeking medical help if you require it.
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