Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Use of Computer Ergonomics for Good Health



Use of Computer Ergonomics for Good Health

Author: Dr. Krishna N. Sharma (PT)
Email: dr.krisharma@gmail.com
Cont: +91-9320699167
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          Consistent increase in computer uses in this techno-savvy era has contributed a lot for betterment of the lifestyle but at the same time it is interfering in our normal body mechanics also. Actually the culprit is not the computer but the absence of ergonomic implementation due to lack of knowledge and awareness. In poor ergonomic position and posture the muscles become constrained to remain contracted and the ligaments to remain stretched. This causes injury to muscles, tendons, and ligaments as well as nerve compression which results in various neuro-musculo-skeletal disorders like Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Soft Tissue Injuries and Pain in upper limb joints like shoulders, elbows, forearms, wrists and hands.
             
        These all problems can be avoided by little awareness, care and modifications in our computer concerned surroundings among which the most important components are the chair, the monitor, the keyboard and the mouse.
             
       The inappropriate height of the chair can put enough strain on the muscles of back, hip and leg producing symptoms. To avoid it the chair’s height should be adjusted in such a way so that your feet can rest flat on the floor. It can also be achieved by placing a foot-rest in case the chair is too high. The chair should have a lower back (Lumber) support to maintain normal curvature.
 
       A suitable position of the monitor is equally important. A 17 inches monitor should be placed at least 20 inches away. The centre of the monitor should be in front of your eye level when sitting comfortably with the spine and neck straight. It will prevent neck pain and headache due to the incorrect neck position.
 
        Using the computer keyboard is not less than an art which requires correct neutral position of the wrists and gentle operation of keys instead of bended wrists, knocking style strokes and typewriter style strong press. It should be in a comfortable reach. The elbows should be bended at 90° and the keyboard should be below its’ level. It avoids the constant shoulder elevation and prevents strain of the muscles around the shoulders. The neutral straight position of the wrist is important because a bended wrist causes compression on median nerve passing from a tunnel in wrist causing Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. An articulating keyboard tray with a negative tilt platform keeps the wrist joint in neutral position. The keys should be pressed gently keeping the shoulders, arms, hands and fingers relaxed. The keys should not be hold for long time after press.
 
        The position of the mouse should be comfortably near to you and at the level or slight above the level of the keyboard. The palm, wrist or hand should not rest on the mouse, palm rest or wrist rest when not working as it produces unnecessary compression and stress on soft tissues. You can put your hand in lap for rest.
 
        If you are aware of these small but important things, the technology will never come in the way of your physical comfort.



Author: Dr. Krishna N. Sharma (PT)
Email: dr.krisharma@gmail.com
Cont: +91-9320699167  
Follow the author on Facebook