Setting Up an Ergonomic Workstation is Good For Your Employees’ Health!

Most people are unaware that the placement of their computer monitor can affect their body’s health. Not knowing a good ergonomic way to set up a workstation can take a toll on an employee’s neck and back. Many people suffer eyestrain, back pain and headaches unnecessarily and simple things can be done to improve their health.

The first thing you should consider is monitor placement. For most workstations, the best position is centered in front of them since putting the monitor off-center can cause neck and shoulder pain from twisting and sitting in an awkward position. However, there are exceptions. An employee may have several interactions with others across a desk, like a bank teller or manager. They may want to keep the monitor to the side as to not interfere with their communications. A good solution for that is to put the monitor on a swivel arm.

The height of their monitor also plays a huge roll in reducing workstation discomfort or pain. The ideal position when viewing their monitor is to have their line of vision be 2″-3″ below the top of the screen, when sitting comfortably. If they place the monitor too low they will tilt their head forward (a common cause of neck pain). If it’s too high then they tilt their head back, which could cause neck and shoulder pain. Another factor when having the monitor too high is the glare from overhead lights (a common cause of headaches).

Sitting at an arm’s length from the monitor is another good ergonomic solution. Sitting too far away or too close can cause eye strain, which is a huge contributing factor to headaches at work. If they have larger monitors, you may need to have them sit a little further away than an arm’s length.

One factor that is often overlooked is windows. Everyone wants the office next to the window, but make sure you take care of possible glares that can come from an office window. Be sensitive to any reflections that may cause them to squint. A good way to check this is to turn off their monitor and see what reflects off of it. Also, if you place their monitor in front of a window, it can create a glare and strain the eyes if the brightness of the window is greater than the monitor’s.

Taking breaks is one of the best ways to rest their eyes. Don’t forget to teach them to look away from their monitor once in awhile to help their eyes adjust and focus.

These are simple solutions that can help reduce stress and pain at work, and can possibly prevent lost work from muscle strain and injuries. As an employer, it is good practice to teach your computer bound employees the proper way to set up their workstation.

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