When you think about workplace injuries, visions of construction workers and broken bones generally pass through the mind. But a surprising number of health issues occur amongst workers who never get out from behind a desk. They may not be some of the more glamorous workplace injuries, but poor posture and improper workstations can lead musculoskeletal problems of your neck, shoulders and back, eyestrain and carpal tunnel syndrome, all of which can stay with you for the rest of your life.
Beyond the aches and pains of having poor posture, sitting behind a desk all day can dramatically affect your overall health. In 2014, Career Builder sponsored a survey of 2,095 people with desk jobs and 1,102 workers with non-desk jobs. Among the many findings: 46 percent reported gaining weight since taking a desk job, compared to 30 percent of non-desk job workers. A majority of employees in both categories (58 percent and 51 percent, respectively) reported being overweight.
Since we know that physical inactivity is linked to obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease, as well as increased stress levels and risk of injury or illness, it is even more critical for you desk jockey’s to find ways to get some exercise. According to the American Heart Association, walking at least 30 minutes a day (10,000 steps) helps reduce these risks.
“Micro-breaks” can help sedentary workers reduce injury risk and improve concentration. Simple things like getting a drink of water in the break room, delivering a message to a colleague in person, standing at meetings or while on the phone, walking with a buddy (peer pressure helps!) at lunchtime can make a huge difference. And using a pedometer or FitBit is a great way to help you reach that step goal!
We know it may not be an injury you can brag about, but if you are dealing with aches, pains or numbness from sitting behind a desk all day, don’t hesitate to give Worker Care a call. At the very least, we can give you some motivation to get up and get moving!