Every epoch brings us not only new benefits, but also new problems.
Computers have deeply penetrated in our lives today. Study shows that an average worker in the US spends up to 7 hours at a computer per day.
Computers made our jobs easier, more precise and productive, eliminated a lot of routine. However, they also brought us a lot of problems we’ve never faced earlier. Since we sit and stare at the screen for a long time without breaks, our bodies and eyes suffer.
Will I Die, Doc?
Probably, not. However, the TIME magazine insists sitting kills.
Scoliosis, short-sightedness, sore wrists, neck pain, dry eyes, blurred vision, headache, fatigue — that’s what you can get if not paying enough attention to how you spend your time at a computer.
Most of the issues come from long uninterrupted sitting. For instance, you can get short-sightedness because sitting too closely to the screen; scoliosis and wrist injuries — because of poor ergonomics. Headache, fatigue, dry eyes and blurred vision can be also caused by a long uninterrupted work on a computer — it’s called a computer vision syndrome.
I’ve been working on a computer for the last 10 years daily and observed a 50% eyesight drop during this time. After the recent vision test, I of course started an intensive research how to save my eyes and not go blind at some point. It’s better late than never, right?
With this post, I want to share what I learned about keeping myself healthy in the last 2 months. I’ll break it down into 3 shorter posts: this one will contain general information, one about taking care of eyes and one about taking care of your body.
So, the good news is that you can prevent all the health issues I mentioned above, but it requires a tiny bit of effort from your side.
Pay attention to the distance between your eyes and the screen. Keep it at least one arm away from your eyes.
Avoiding Eye Strain
90% of computer-workers all over the world suffer from the computer vision syndrome (CVS). That’s when you’re focusing on a computer screen for too long, and get a headache, fatigue, eye strain and many more symptoms.
Take regular breaks to reduce eye strain and knockdown the CVS. For example, I’m using a 20–20–20 rule. It says you should take a 20-second break every 20 minutes and look at a static object 20 ft (6 m) away from you.
I wrote a post with 5 simple tricks on how to get rid of computer vision syndrome & prevent short-sightedness.
Saving Back And Wrists
Repetitive strain injury of wrists and scoliosis is what you can if sitting wrong and not taking breaks in your typing work.
Combine your eye-breaks with short stretches or, better, walks.
Nourish Yourself Properly
Otherwise, you can gain weight or get diabetes. Pay attention to your caloric intake vs burn and also to your sugar intake. You shouldn’t take in more than your burn. A daily sugar dose for an adult is just 30g (7 teaspoons)!
It’s hard to keep yourself in these boundaries, especially if you’re working in one of those Silicon Valley companies with an unlimited supply of food for free.
I wrote a post with 4 simple tricks on how to prevent scoliosis, obesity, diabetes, wrist injuries and neck pain.
Your health is your most-valuable asset. It’s worth taking care of it as it’s very hard to recover it.
All the aforementioned tricks are super easy and require only a tiny bit of self-discipline. I managed to get used to taking regular breaks in just half a day.
You should always keep in mind that all the effort is a long-term investment in your quality of life. This should probably motivate you not to sit crooked and take walks.