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How to Setup an Ergonomic Work Area at Home [Video FAQ]

If you’re anything like me, you’ve seen so many people who have had to change their lifestyle exponentially because of working at home, schooling at home, virtual and online meetings. And our life is becoming more and more virtual.

So what does that mean? More and more postural stress, worse ergonomics.

What are the health effects of that? Well, we’re going to go through exactly what that looks like here today and what you can do to change that immediately. Unfortunately, the biggest stress on the body today, especially the spine, is sitting. And now that we’re spending more and more time on devices, I’m going to show you exactly the issues that poor ergonomics causes your body.

How Poor Ergonomics Cause Stress to Your Spine & How to Fix it

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Prefer to read? Here’s the gist of what else Dr. Tim spoke about in this video clip.

Cell Phone Ergonomics

So it starts with your cell phone. Pretty much everybody has one of these. And the average time in America that people spend on their cell phone now is over three hours per day minimum. That’s the average time. Now there’s people that are out there spending 8, 9, 10, 12 hours a day on this device. And have you ever thought about what your posture looks like when you’re on your cell phone? Typically it’s like this.

And so what’s that doing to your spine? Well, your spine regulates your brain, your nervous system, the health and healing of your entire body. When you’re looking down like that, it goes like this.

What this is doing, is adding two, three, four, five times the amount of pressure on the discs to your neck. The muscles must hold 30, 40, 50 pounds of weight versus the normal 12 to 15 pounds that your head weighs. And over time that will not only degenerate the spine, but overload those nerves to where you’re going to have neck problems, headaches, shoulder problems, disc issues, numbness, and tingling.

But also these are the nerves that go to your heart and your lungs. They control the function of your heart. They regulate portions of your immune system. They regulate your metabolism. And a spine problem that’s affecting the nerves is a health problem. So hours and hours a day staring down at your cell phone, day in day out, creates all kinds of health issues.

Home Computer Workstation Ergonomics

Now what about your computer? Maybe you’re working in a home right now where you have your job and your primarily sitting? And you’re working on your laptop. So you’ve got your laptop, and it’s here like this.

What are you doing? You’re looking down. Your arms are forward.

What’s the stress? Maybe your neck gets tight and tense. Your upper shoulders get tight and tense.

What if you’re using your home computer? Your nice office workstation is no longer available. Maybe you just have a coffee table in the corner or the kitchen table, or the old desk that Grandma Ruth gave you that’s been sitting in the back office for the last 20 years that now you’re using. And look at this – my screens down and my keyboards away from me. What am I doing? I’m doing this.

What does that look like? Six to eight hours a day of constant stress on the body. This postural stress is the number one cause of what’s called subluxation.

Subluxation is when you have a dysfunction in your spine that interferes how your brain communicates to your body. Again, this isn’t just a back problem. This is a nerve problem that affects your health.

So many of the issues I see people with include worsening pain and health issues, worsening problems with breathing, worsening immune system, worse sleep, less focus. All these things tie back to the extra stress they’re putting on their spine and the nervous system from more device use and poor posture.

How to Keep Your Body in a Powerful Ergonomic State

So what I want to do is give you a couple of tips that you can take away today to change that.

Proper Cell Phone and Mobile Device Ergonomic Use

When you’re using your cell phone or devices, try to have it up here where you’re looking forward and really minimize that time. There are multiple different apps that track the time you use here. I’d recommend getting one.

Proper Laptop Ergonomic Use

When it comes to your laptop, if you’re using it consistently, you can get external keyboards. You get things that raise your laptop up so it’s more like this, and you can type more regularly.

Proper Computer Workstation Setup

Your screen should be eye level. So my screen should be way up here.

The keyboard, you can get a wireless keyboard and mouse, where you can bring it back closer to you. You should have 90 degrees in your arms and your elbows. You should have a chair that has armrests and you should be able to sit up completely. So instead of me being like this all day, you can be like this where your body’s in a more powerfully ergonomic state.

That’s what you can start working on immediately.

How to Deal With the Effects of Poor Ergonomics

If you’re having any adverse effects of these issues or long-term health problems, the best thing you can do is get to a corrective care chiropractor. Get your spine and your nervous system evaluated and begin correcting this issue so it doesn’t keep degenerating your health.

We help guide people through the process of better ergonomics, restructuring of the spine, and correcting the underlying problems of health from subluxation, especially with the extra device use. It’s more important now than ever. If you want to be truly healthy, you’ve got to take care of your spine and nervous system.

Learn More About Your Most Pressing Health Concerns

Have you had the opportunity to join us at one of our community education events yet? During the community education events, Dr. Tim sifts through all of the knowledge out there to bring you key information about how to get healthy and stay that way and shares answers to frequently asked questions on chiropractic care and healthy eating. Enjoy the clips of previous events here.