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We spend much of our time doing work. Whether that is from home, in an office or outdoors. But what happens if our job starts affecting our health? Job-related hazards and even the environment in which we work can cause a variety of health problems. And, unfortunately, most people don’t even know they are at risk for injury or other health issues. Here are some of the most common trouble areas and how you can help prevent health problems before they arise.
Excessive Computer and Keyboard Use
Many people have jobs that require them to sit at a desk all day in front of the computer. Even business owners, like me, can spend hours glued to the keyboard. Wrists and hands may stay in an unnatural position for a long period of time. Without regular breaks from the computer, you could experience some unwanted symptoms. If you begin to feel aches and tingling sensation in your wrists and hands, you may be experiencing the early signs of carpal tunnel syndrome. Fortunately, it is fairly common and can be helped with carpal tunnel treatment. Major problems can be avoided with regular breaks and stretching. I also massage my arms and wrists regularly if they feel overworked. Chiropractic care can also be helpful.
Stress from Work Pressure and Deadlines
We’ve all been there. A deadline is looming and more work gets piled on your desk. Or your boss is firing emails over or breathing down your neck. Deadlines and pressure at work can be the biggest cause of job-related stress. It can also be the beginning of many other underlying health problems, including depression and anxiety. While you may not be able to avoid all of this type of stress, you can look out for the signs of over work and overwhelm. Some common symptoms include fatigue, irritability, forgetfulness, headaches, nervousness, work quality slipping, rapid pulse, rising blood pressure, anger, insomnia, and many that I don’t have room to mention.
Talk to your employer if things get out of hand and you need a lighter work load. If the job requires this kind of continual effort from you, it may be time to search for other options. The other thing you can do is find healthy ways to unwind or manage stress; such as, yoga, walking, counseling, hobbies, or music.
Chronic Headaches or Migraine
Migraines and recurrent headaches can cause big problems not just at work but in your personal life. Trust me, I had a bad migraine condition for 15 years. And, one stressful job, in particular, did not help it at all. Though there are many triggers for headaches and migraine, several that are common among sufferers are stress, poor diet, excessive computer or electronics use, dehydration, and loud sounds. I also experienced more headaches when I drank too much coffee, which can be common among office workers.
Make sure you step away from your work when you can. Go outside and get some fresh air or just sit in a quiet place for a few minutes. Prevention is really the best way to manage headaches. So this means you will have to pay attention to how you feel long before you get that first twinge of pain.
Type II Diabetes and Other Dietary Issues
Overwork, stress and poor time management can create day after day of bad dietary choices and lack of exercise. Both of which can be major contributors to conditions like diabetes or obesity. Eating the wrong types of foods or not taking the time to eat can be detrimental to your health long before Diabetes develops. Pay attention to any changes in your weight, thirst, energy, and vision. Any sudden changes in these areas could be warning signs of something more serious and should be addressed with your physician.
Make an eating plan for your week ahead of time. Pack your lunch most of the time and try to make better food choices when you do go out. Keep healthy snacks in your desk to keep your energy levels up and your blood sugar normal.
Excessive, Continual, or Loud Noise
If you work in a place with sudden loud noises or a continual hum of machinery, you could be at risk for hearing loss. You should be informed by your employer about risks and be provided with proper ear protection. If not, you need to either communicate your concerns to your boss or find another job. There are laws in place to protect you. Loss of hearing is an issue that may go undetected or get ignored if it’s not significant. It’s up to you to make sure you are not a victim of unnecessary workplace neglect.
**** This post is strictly informational and is not meant to replace the advice of your health care provider. Women’s lifelink, it’s owners, administrators, contributors, affiliates, vendors, authors and editors do not claim that this information will diagnose, treat, or improve any condition or disease.