By Dr. Thomas Horowitz

Even though the California government is slowly easing the ‘safer-at-home’ orders, schools and non-essential businesses continue to remain closed and most of us are working from home. This can be challenging for a variety of reasons. The most common challenge, faced by many, is the lack of a proper workspace setup at home. At work we may have all the ergonomics to make our workday comfortable and productive, but working from home—quite literally—can be a pain in the neck.

Below are ways to make your home workspace more comfortable and ergonomic as you continue to work from home:

  • It is important to properly position your equipment (laptop/desktop) to reflect a normal work setup. Poorly positioned equipment can lead to neck, shoulder, and back spasms. Many people are working from a laptop instead of a desktop. The laptop screen should be up to your eye level. This may require a separate keyboard to keep your arms in a comfortable position (bent at 90-degree angles).
  • Use a good chair with proper height and lumbar support for you.
  • Headsets tend to be more comfortable and give a little more privacy.
  • Take short breaks during your workday to keep you energized and focused. This also helps relieve any neck, back, or shoulder pain that may arise from sitting for long hours. Break times are also important as you need to stretch your legs to get circulation.
  • Follow the 20-20-20 rule to prevent eye strain. For every 20 minutes spent looking at a digital screen or device, you should look away at an object 20 feet away for 20 seconds or more.
  • You want a work area with your needs close at hand. Drink some water between cups of coffee.
  • Try to follow a work schedule. Stick to your regular office hours so you don’t get caught up by the workload and maintain a good work-life balance.
  • Last, but not the least, take time to network with your coworkers and friends via call, text, video chat or social media.

You may be working alone safe at home, but we are all in this together.
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