Are you an IT professional who spends long hours in front of the computer? If your answer is in the affirmative, then this article is for you.
Between monitoring networks, configuring applications, and managing technology projects, IT professionals spend massive amounts of time in front of the computer screen.
Clinical studies done in India have found that software engineers who work long hours suffer mostly from musculoskeletal problems, eye problems and psychosocial issues.
Common Health Problems:
1.Lower Back Pain:
This is probably the most common problem suffered by IT professionals. Almost 80% of people who spend more than 8 hours in front of a computer which can lead to great stress on bony joints and cartilages of back leading to back pain. The problem lies in wrong posture and not taking frequent breaks in between the work. On a long run persistent stress & strain on the bone and ligaments leads to structural changes in the back bone thus leading to a chronic back pain
Prevention: To avoid lower back pain, pay constant attention to your posture. Placing a lumbar support pillow behind your lower back can help. Even using a rolled towel or thin pillow behind your lower back can improve support. Also, be sure to remove any items from your back pockets to avoid creating pressure points and an awkward spine angle.
2.Obesity and Stress:
Obesity and stress are the dearest friends. With increased stress, your physical health and your mental health are affected. Obesity in IT professionals causes heart problems and sometimes sudden death. If you are a woman and getting back to work after pregnancy, there are chances that your sit-for-long-hours work and sedentary lifestyle will make you obese.
Prevention: Try to walk more and exercise more. Hit the gym and begin with cardiac exercises. If you have sweet tooth then try to have a control over it. Roadside food and junk food is a complete “No-No” for you. Keep a closer look at your weight and alter your lifestyle based on your body weight.
3.Vitamin D deficiency:
Most people get the vitamin D they need through sun exposure. But if you’re in a northern climate and you spend most of your time indoors handling IT concerns, you might not be getting the vitamin D you need. Vitamin D deficiency has been linked to a variety of health problems, including bone diseases, multiple sclerosis, and certain cancers.
Prevention: In addition to taking regular short walks outside or taking a daily multivitamin, you can get vitamin D through your diet. For example, eating fortified cereals and fatty fish like salmon and tuna can help keep your vitamin D level normal.
Many IT workers use their electronic devices late into the evening. But staring at an illuminated screen before bedtime can limit the body’s production of melatonin, a hormone that helps you fall asleep. Chronic insomnia can lead to other health problems.
Prevention: Consider switching your electronic devices off an hour or half-hour before going to sleep. Dim the lights and read a book to help prepare your body for rest.
5.computer vision syndrome:
Those who spend most of their time staring at a computer screen are prone to suffer with a condition called as computer vision syndrome.Computer vision syndrome is characterized by dry eyes, red eyes, sensitivity to glare, pain around the eyes, headache and overall fatigue. Nearly 7 out of 10 people who spend 8 to 12 hours a day staring at a computer screen will develop eye problems.Around 80% of individuals with eye problems hail from the IT profession, according to a report in Times of India.
Prevention:1.Follow the Mayo Clinic 20-20-20 rule. Every 20 minutes, look away from the computer screen at an object around 20 feet away for duration of 20 seconds.
2.Using anti-glare screen covers can reduce eye strain significantly and reduce your chances of developing computer vision syndrome.
3.Avoid using your computer in a dark room.