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Computers and Your Health

Computers have become a nearly inseparable part of our everyday lives. We use them in school, at work, and even for play. What that amounts to is an incredible amount of time spent looking at digital screens, typing on keyboards, manipulating mice, swiping touch screens, and sitting. This leads to an ever-growing list of technology related health risks. At Geek Easy Computers we believe part of making your technology easier is providing you with information on making the physical toll less taxing.

Risks & Tips

  • Repetitive Stress Injury – If you do a lot of typing, or mouse/trackpad usage, you may have experienced pain in your hand, fingers, or even shoulder. Holding your muscles in an non-natural position (such as when typing) for an extended time can lead to stiffness, swelling or pain in that area. A common diagnosis of such injury is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome which affects the wrist.
    • Tip – Break the cycle of repetition. Move your entire arm when moving the mouse instead of just your wrist. Frequently take breaks from typing. Throughout the day, remember to relax your arms and hands periodically. Do hand/wrist exercises such as these to alleviate strain.

 

  • Muscle & Skeletal issues – Soreness and fatigue are common complaints of users that spend a lot of time on computers. Mostly back pain/numbness, but it can also occur in the chest, arms, shoulders or feet. This mostly happens because of poor posture or sitting in one position too long when using the computer.
    • Tip – Adjust your chair or desk such that your screen is at eye level or lower. Sit with your back straight with feet resting flat on the floor. Your elbows should rest at the sides.
    • Tip – Take short breaks from work to stretch or go for a quick walk.

 

  • Vision Issues (Eye Strain) – With so many people using computers at work, computer related eye strain has become a major job-related complaint. Studies show that eye strain and other visual symptoms occur in 50 to 90 percent of computer workers.
    • Tip – Lighting. Eye strain often is caused by excessively bright light either from outdoor sunlight coming in through a window or from harsh interior lighting. When you use a computer, your ambient lighting should be about half as bright as that typically found in most offices. If possible, turn off the overhead fluorescent lights in your office and use floor lamps that provide indirect incandescent or halogen lighting instead.
    • Tip – Avoid glare. Adjust your monitor and/or widows to reduce glare on your screen. LCD screens are easier on the eyes and usually have an anti-reflective surface. Larger displays are easier on your eyes. For a desktop computer, select a display that has a diagonal screen size of at least 19 inches.
    • Tip – Take frequent short breaks away from the screen. Give your eyes a break.
    • Tip – Blink. It sounds funny but studies show that computers tend to blink less when staring at the screen, causing eye dryness, irritation, and strain.

 

We hope the info we’ve provided here helps to make your computer use not only easier but healthier. What we’ve provided are just general tips and suggestions gleaned from several sources and our own personal experience. None of this should be taken as medical advice. If you are experiencing health issues you should contact your family physician. If you are experiencing computer issues, call your local trusted crew of computer experts, Geek Easy Computers!

 

me_smile Adonis Pointer is a photographer, a collector of vintage razors, and a certified technology geek!
Adonis has been involved in computer technology since well, a LONG time! He has been involved in nearly every aspect of the industry from sales to repair to training to consulting. As the Social Media Manager he writes the majority of the posts on the Geek Easy Computers blog.

 

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