Back pain is a common affliction suffered by 80 percent of Americans with a sedentary desk job. Most people have back pain at least once in their life, and the older you are, the more likely you are to have it. Acute back pain is typically caused by twisting or lifting something too heavy, but chronic back pain is a long-term problem.
What Causes Back Pain in the Office?
Desk workers develop back pain because of many factors, but the most common are a poor desk setup and bad posture. Many desk chairs don’t offer the right lumbar support and bigger offices that encourage hot desking don’t always have desks set up for individuals.
Here are some quick fixes for back pain caused by a desk job.
Improve Your Workstation Setup
Switching to an ergonomic desk chair can make a big difference. Buy a height adjustable chair so it is set at the right height for your size. Lumbar support is critical, as this supports your lower back and reduces tension. Seat depth matters also. A smaller person needs a shallower seat; an adjustable backrest will help here.
Next, look at your desk. Monitors need to be positioned at eye level. If you’re looking at Lenovo home office laptops, invest in a laptop stand, so the screen is at a better height. A separate keyboard and mouse are also better, so you are not stretching too far when you type. If you have a bigger budget, think about buying a height adjustable desk. It is a wonderful invention, as you can switch between standing and sitting during the day.
Take Plenty of Work Breaks
Sitting for 8+ hours a day is really bad news for your back. Ideally, get up at least once an hour and give your back a good stretch. Walk around for five minutes and perform dynamic stretches. Set an alarm on your phone if you regularly fall into a well of productivity and barely notice the passage of time.
Try and take some time out to do relaxation exercises during break times. This will help ease any tension-related back pain.
Improve Your Core Strength
A weak core leads to poor posture, so it is a good idea to work on core strengthening exercises if you suffer from back pain. There are plenty of exercises you can do, including planks, glute bridges, reverse crunches, and leg raises. Do these exercises as often as you can and before long, your core will be much stronger and your posture much improved.
Improve Your Diet
Being overweight can exacerbate back pain. Look closely at your diet. Is it unhealthy? Do you snack on junk food at the office instead of packing a healthy lunch?
Switch to healthy options. This will boost your intake of essential vitamins and minerals, in addition to helping you lose weight.
If self-help treatments don’t work for your back pain, consult a physiotherapist to see what they suggest, as there may be an underlying weakness that’s contributing to the problem.