If you or your employees suffer from the effects of poor office ergonomics, your career may be on the line.
Statistics Canada estimates that injuries caused by unergonomic work conditions affect 2.3 million Canadians. Not only does improving the ergonomics of your workspace help reduce injuries and related costs, but it also helps boost productivity, reduce absenteeism, and make your employees more engaged and focused!
Repetitive Strain Injuries (RSIs) are caused by force, repetition, and unergonomic or static postures. What makes these injuries dangerous is that workers often fail to associate them with their workplace. Over time, these aches and pains can develop into severe, chronic, and debilitating permanent injuries.
Fortunately, understanding how these injuries develop and taking preventative measures can stop them before they become long-term disorders.
What Are Repetitive Strain Injuries?
Repetitive strain injuries are damage to the musculoskeletal system (your body’s network of bones, muscles, ligaments, joints, and much more). RSIs often develop as simple nuisances like aches and pains. As a result, workers seldom realize that they are at risk of a musculoskeletal injury until it develops into a serious issue.
These injuries also cause a wide range of negative secondary psychological effects such as brain fog, lack of productivity, loss of sleep from nighttime pain, and even a feeling of uncertainty about the future.
If you think that you might be experiencing the early symptoms of a musculoskeletal injury, you must take action immediately. Although there are many symptoms of developing RSIs, some of the main ones include muscle tightness or burning, stiffness in the morning, swollen fingers, decreased range of motion for joints, pins and needles, and swelling.
What Causes Repetitive Strain Injuries?
Unlike workplace accidents that cause immediate injury, RSIs are injuries that develop over long periods. They commonly start when a worker does a repetitive action, works in an awkward position, or remains static for long durations. Over time, these negative forces begin to wear down the worker’s joints, bones, and muscles, and begin to cause severe problems if left unchecked.
In the long term, even the tiniest pains can develop into injuries that prevent a person from working entirely. For example, a simple elbow pain left untreated can eventually develop into the dreaded “tennis elbow,” an inflammation and tearing of the tendons near the elbow.
How Can I Stop RSIs?
As soon as you begin to suspect that you or your team may be experiencing RSIs, it’s time to take action. Speed is key when attempting to protect yourself from workplace injuries. The sooner you begin to implement safety measures, the less severe your RSIs will be – every day that you leave your office space unoptimized is another day for your RSIs to develop and worsen.
Since these types of injuries are difficult to detect, the best defence against them is to prevent them entirely. The only reliable way to accomplish this is to eliminate the risk factors present in your workspace by implementing proper office ergonomics.
What Are Office Ergonomics?
Office ergonomics is the practice of adjusting office workspaces to suit a person’s natural anatomical position. In other words, it’s all about putting yourself in the most comfortable, stress-free position while you work.
These ergonomic adjustments can vary in magnitude from something as simple as elevating the height of your office chair, to getting completely new office equipment like standing desks and ergonomic keyboards.
Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide how you will go about optimizing your workspace. With so many online resources and guides about ergonomics, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and discouraged before you even begin.
That’s why booking a consultation with a certified ErgoPrime ergonomist is a great place to start. Our experts will assess your office space and work with you one-on-one to optimize your work environment, teach strategies for preventing RSIs, and even suggest products that you can buy to upgrade your space! This approach is the best way to demystify the world of ergonomics and get a plan that tailors your workspace to you!
Get Started Today!
Booking a virtual, contactless consultation with ErgoPrime is as simple as filling out our online form and sending a couple of pictures of your workspace. Our expert ergonomists will then assess your situation and virtually meet with you to optimize your office to make you healthier, happier, and more productive!
Click here to contact us and get started today!