Occupational health

Occupational Health and Well-being for Office Employees

Figuring out what can be done for occupational health and wellness we first have to know what can be the health consequences of office jobs. Office jobs usually require lots of sitting, working at the computer, psychosocial stress and other unpleasantnesses that can have negative effects on health. In spite of that, office employees can manage their health problems themselves by making their workplace a healthier environment.

In this blog for office workplace well-being, we will list some of the most common possible health-inconveniences of working in an office and offer effective tricks to decrease them.

 

What Can Office Employees Do to Increase Their Well-being at Work

Office work brings along consequences of wrong sitting posture, long-lasting physical inactivity, staring at the computer screen, psychosocial stress and can cause back pain, reduced eyesight, headaches, fatigue … and other connected health problems. Let’s see the most common ones and how to avoid them to increase our well-being at work.

1. Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS)

It means that we get eye or vision problems because of prolonged computer use. To reduce possibility for them to occur, make sure that you change your sight-focus as often as possible. Look down the office or through the window (at a distance) now and then to or just close your eyes to rest them.

2. Back Pain

Sitting in a chair is still one of the more unnatural postures for human body. Correctly designed office chairs, sitting on a big ball or even part time standing at your (lifted) desk instead of sitting can be a good start. But it is the most important to strengthen your back and abdominal muscles to keep your torso strong and your backbone safe. Exercises that can be performed at work are usually also part of the Occupational Health Program.

3. Fatigue

Many times we get tired in the office and we have barely even started working. To activate, we can stretch a bit or take a minute walk and a few deep breaths. A short office workout can also be good for our back and if we open the window while performing exercises, we can clear our mind even better and refresh to continue working on a project.

 

 

4. Headache

Headaches among office employees can be a consequence of dehydration, lack of oxygen in the air, great psychological strain, before mentioned fatigue or CVS. You can reduce the possibility for a headache by decreasing causes of headaches. For example, drink more water (or unsweetened tea), let fresh air into the office (if possible), perform a relaxing exercise etc.

5. Psychosocial Stress

It can’t be said that there is much physical strain in office jobs. But we should know that our body reacts to stress in the same way, no matter what causes it. In case of psychosocial stress our body reacts by raising the cortisol (stress hormone) levels and we have to make sure that we’ve put it back to the normal level and let our body recover. Avoiding stress at any workplace isn’t possible, but we do a lot if we know how to successfully manage it.

 

Make Your Own Workplace Healthy

So there is a lot to do in the office to enhance our workplace health. Some things can only be done by the organization we work for but a lot can be done by ourselves. If we take care of our health and well-being in our private time, we’ll also be able to implement a healthy lifestyle at our workplace – even if it is a sitting one.

Eva Kovač
Eva.Kovac@24alife.com

Eva Kovac is a performance psychologist working in the field of talent management, organizational psychology, and performance psychology. She is educated as a cognitive-behavioral psychotherapist, a medical hypnotherapist. Eva has rich global experiences working with international organizations on employee well-being programs and professional athletes, teams, managers, and talents. Eva is also a guest speaker at many international conferences on psychology-related topics. Stress managment facilitator for Apollo Hospitals, Tata Motors, Tata Consultancy Services, NSIC, AIMA, Roseate Hotels and many others.