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Home Office Ergonomics and Injury Prevention

Home Office

Whether you're new to working at home or you've recently begun telecommuting, a home office can be a convenient option for earning a living. In order to work at home effectively, it is important to furnish your home office carefully. Repetitive strain injuries are common with desk work, but you can take steps to prevent those injuries. Watch for common symptoms of a repetitive strain injury as you work, and be responsive if you begin to experience pain.

Repetitive strain injuries involve the gradual damage of muscles, tendons, and nerves as a result of motions that you repeat regularly. Repetitive strain injuries can occur from exercise, playing sports, and some types of repetitive work. Anytime an activity involves the use of the same muscles repeatedly or holding of the same position or posture for a long time, repetitive strain injuries are a potential risk. People who are not in good physical condition or who don't exercise regularly have a higher risk of developing a repetitive strain injury.

Avoiding a repetitive strain injury takes attention to detail. First, you have to set up your home office to be ergonomically safe and comfortable. Secondly, you have to stay attuned to your body and respond quickly if you notice any symptoms of a repetitive strain injury. It's much easier to avoid a repetitive strain injury than it is to heal or reverse one once it begins causing significant pain and problems.

Setting up your home office is the key to staying healthy as you work from home. Don't work for an extended period in a space that's not ergonomically healthy. The ideal home working space will have adequate lighting, will have quiet and privacy, and will have easy access to the Internet and power. It's also very important to have the electronics needed to do your job successfully. If your employer offers office supply reimbursement or stipend for the employees, it may be worth investing in the latest or newer technology. Resist the urge to sit on your bed to work or to sit on a couch without adequate lumbar support. Monitor yourself regularly for pain, and make adjustments properly if you notice any discomfort.