5 Office Habits That Are Damaging Your Arms and Wrists
We all do it: sitting at our desks, crunched over the keyboard, maintaining the same position for hours until we realize our backs are hurting a little and our arms are getting tired. Then we correct our posture and repeat all over again.With work taking most of our focus during the workday, it is understandable that we pay little-to-no attention on the posture of our back, shoulders, arms and wrists. However, in the long run, bad posture can cause a lot of painful problems. As always, prevention is the best medicine. So, here are 5 office habits you should pay attention not to fall into in order to avoid injury to your arms and wrists:
- Sitting in awkward postures at your desk – Sitting with a forward head posture can compress the nerves that run from the neck into the arms, which may cause pain in the arms and hands. Sitting a little to far from your desk and reaching forwards with the shoulders can compress blood vessels and nerves that travel through the shoulders.
- Solution: Sit in a relaxed position with a tall back, head aligned with your spine and with your elbows at side, not reaching.
- Positioning the forearm and wrists incorrectly when using a computer – Placing your wrists in a bent upward or downward position, or in an almost perpendicular shape in relation to your forearms, can cause damage to your wrists.
- Solution: Letting your elbows rest at your sides bent at a 90-degree angle, your wrists should lay flat with the middle finger aligned with the forearm.
- Leaving your arms, wrists and hands in a single position for too long – Even if your posture is perfect, staying in one position for long periods of time can be damaging.
- Solution: Break up keyboard intensive tasks by taking little breaks to return calls, hand-write notes, or stretch the muscles and joints.
- Using wrist rests when working on your computer keyboard – Wrist rests can press on the carpal tunnel and make any existing problem worse.
- Solution: Maintain the wrists in the proper position described above.
- Not stretching your muscles and joints during the workday, especially if you work at a desk most of the time.