Ergonomic Injuries Prevention
Understanding ergonomic injuries
Ergonomics can be defined as the scientific understanding between man and his surroundings and applying the mechanical, anatomic and physiologic principles to prevent any injuries at home or work.
Small errors done in day-to-day life affect us more than we realize.These ergonomic related injuries are easily avoided by just a little more awareness of how to prevent them.
Computer workstation errors
You should ensure that your computer workspace is ergonomically viable for a healthy work environment.
Preventing Specific Ergonomic Injuries
Preventing Ergonomic Injuries To Your Posture
Working Posture: This is to prevent the misalignment of the spine, which can develop to become permanent.
When you are seated at your chair your back, head and neck should be upright and not bent forward or backward.
Keep your torso perpendicular to the floor or as much as possible.The upper arms and shoulders should also be perpendicular to the floor and be relaxed. Try to keep your upper arms and the elbows as close as possible to the body and not stretched forward. Keep the forearm at ninety degrees to the upper arm.
The thighs should be running parallel to the floor and the legs should be perpendicular to the floor too.
Preventing Ergonomic Injuries to the Back, Hips and Legs
Seating arrangement: The executive chair you choose should provide adequate support to the lower back.
The seat space should be suitable for your body size. Neither should the chair be too big nor should it be too small. The seat pan should not be so long that it pinches into your legs and knees while sitting.
Choose a chair with adaptable cushioning that can adjust as per your body contours and regain its shape equally fast. Check the positioning of the armrests. They should not be a hindrance while working on the computer and provide adequate support to both the forearms.
Having an ergonomic chair would prevent ergonomic related injuries in back, hips and legs.
Preventing Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Positioning the keyboard correctly: In today's IT savvy world maximum time is spent in front of the computer on the keyboard.
Did you know that the way you position your keyboard could actually cause you ergonomic injuries and just a little alteration could prevent it?
Carpel tunnel syndrome is the most common problem arising due to wrong keyboard positioning. There are other pains and aches too that may not have a scientific nomenclature but they are definitely there.The swelling in your joints and wrist and discomfort in your thumb are just a few symptoms that your keyboard alignment needs to be altered.
The keyboard should ideally be positioned in front of you at such a distance that you can type without straining your neck, shoulders and hands. You shouldn't be 'twisting your torso' as well to type.The upper arms should be hanging at a comfortable angle.
Choose a keyboard slope that allows your wrists, forearms and hands at a comfortable position. Keep your mouse to the exact right or left of the keyboard. Do not place it at the back end of the keyboard as you would need to stretch to use it.
These measures would help prevent any ergonomic related injuries to your hands and wrists.
Using a Mueller Fitted Wrist Brace may help prevent Carpal Tunnel.
Preventing Eye Strain and Neck Ache
Placing of the monitor: Place the monitor at such a height that you can read the whole screen without lifting or bending your head. The top of the monitor should not be above your eye-level. For people with spectacles they should be able to read the script without having to pus their head backwards.
You can stack phone books or magazines to raise the position of the monitor, or use a 3M Easy-Adjust Monitor Stand
The monitor should be exactly in front of your face and there no twisting or turning should be required to view it. This way you would be able to prevent any ergonomic injuries to the neck and shoulders. See also Monitor Ergonomics.
Also, beware of too much glare from the intense or strong light shining directly, such as spotlights, or direct sunlight into your eye.
Ergonomic related injuries such eye strain, bad eye sight can be thus prevented.
This 3M Anti-Glare Filter for 23.0-Inch Widescreen Monitor prevents eye irritation.
Computer glasses are also an alternative.
Preventing Cramps and Strains To Your Upper Body
Arrangement of your work area: While arranging your work area you should ensure that your thighs are not literally rubbing with the table.
Enough free space needs to be maintained between your thighs and the table to avoid cramping.
Along with your thighs even your feet and legs should have sufficient open spaces.Use an ergonomic document holder at the correct height so that you don't have to strain yourself every time you reach out for it.
Extra Reading on Ergonomic Injuries
Go back to Musculoskeletal Disorders and Computer Injuries.