Working from home might sound like a dream, but it’s not all positive. Of course, removing the traditional barriers to working remotely has become an appealing option for many employees in the modern workforce. However, this doesn’t come without risks.
This is because working long hours at home can also be harmful to your health, and if you don’t take the necessary precautions, you might find yourself with an unpleasant dose of chronic illness. That’s why you can’t just throw caution to the wind.
Although working from home has a lot of benefits, it can do you more harm than good if you’re not careful. This is because long hours spent sitting in front of a computer screen can cause all sorts of health problems.
From back and neck pain to eye strain, the potential effects of working from home might be surprising at first. But then again, people are spending more time indoors than ever before—and that’s not good for anyone. Here are five ways working from home can be affecting your health negatively:
You’re Not Getting Enough Sleep
Many people assume that working from home will give them more time to sleep, but the opposite is often true. If you aren’t used to working at night or sleeping during the day, it can be more disruptive than getting on with your normal day job. Losing out on natural daylight and fresh air can also have a negative impact on your sleep.
To avoid this, make sure that you stick to a set routine during the working week and don’t work unsociable hours. Also, try turning off all of your technology at least an hour before you go to bed so that you aren’t tempted to check emails or your social media late into the night.
You’re Experiencing Ear Wax Buildup
Many people who work from home regularly tend to wear headphones more often, which can become a breeding ground for bacteria. This is because the lack of air movement in their ear canals means that the wax doesn’t move around, and a brownish-yellow substance known as “cerumen” can build up.
Fortunately, there are procedures, such as the removal of ear wax through microsuction, which have helped many people with this problem. To avoid this, you should get into the habit of taking regular breaks away from your desk to allow your ears some time to breathe. Or you could also use speakers instead of your headphones from time to time.
You’re Developing a Sedentary Lifestyle
While working from home may be good news for your mental health, it can be harmful to your physical well-being. A lack of routine and stress often means that you don’t feel as motivated to exercise. And without the constant encouragement of your colleagues, it’s easy to just stay indoors all day long.
Ultimately, this can lead to you feeling lethargic, fatigued, and generally unwell. To avoid this, try planning your exercise into your daily routine. You could make it a goal to go for a morning run, do some yoga in the evening, or even take a lunchtime walk to squeeze in some physical activity every day.
You’re Being Exposed to Too Much Screen Time
Research has shown that spending too much time in front of your computer can often lead to health problems. The blue light emitted from these screens causes eye strain and prevents the sleep hormone melatonin from being released.
Additionally, using social media or watching online videos can eat up large chunks of your day, and it can be hard to remember how long you’ve been glued to your computer screen. This is why it’s important to take regular breaks away from the computer so that you don’t suffer from eye strain or a stiff neck.
You’re Suffering from Poor Posture
Working from home can be very rewarding, but it can also leave you slumped in front of your laptop for hours at a time. With no one to point out where your body might be going wrong, working without correct posture can lead to potentially serious back problems down the line.
To avoid this, make sure that your screen is at eye level and far away from you. Also, get up from your desk every hour to stretch and take some deep breaths. In the long run, it will help you to maintain a healthy, pain-free back.
While working from home might be good for some people’s well-being, it’s not always free of negative side effects. But if you are careful to adopt the right habits and use the right technologies, you can easily avoid these potential health problems.