Are you glued to the computer outside of work as well?
Long periods of sitting can be bad for you. A recent study revealed the pressure generated on your hips and buttocks can lead to 50% more fat in those areas. But that’s not all. There are actually several ill-effects caused by sitting in front of the computer.
Back and Neck Pain
Your sitting posture, while you work on the computer can significantly impact your back and neck. Research has found when you tilt your head towards the computer screen to read more clearly, you end up compressing your neck muscles.
This eventually leads to pain in your neck and shoulders. The same research also showed that if your posture is straight and erect, the weight of your head and neck is 12 pounds.
It is easy for your back to handle this weight. However, if you tilt your head forward at a 45-degree angle, the weight your back has to handle increases to 45 pounds.
No wonder your back becomes stiff, and your neck and shoulders ache. Unless you sit in the correct posture, working on the computer will cause your neck and back to ache along with weight gain. So it may take some time, but making sure you sit in the correct posture will eventually pay off in the form of a safe back and neck.
Depression and Anxiety
It might sound a little far fetched to you, but hear me out. Working for too long on computers can be detrimental to your mental health. There is enough evidence hinting towards the development of anxiety and depression.
A study aimed at finding the relation between computer usage and self-reported depressive and anxiety disorder (DAD), revealed that DAD was higher in workers who spent more than 75% of their work time on computers, compared to those who spent less than 50%.
The World Health Organization revealed that depression will be the leading cause of disease by 2030. There is evidence that a sedentary lifestyle is among the contributing factors in adult depression. While it’s necessary to complete your work, we suggest you get up from your seat in between. Give your brain and eyes some rest. Maybe those short water cooler breaks aren’t that bad. This way, your productivity will increase.
Increased risk of cancer
Computers have certainly made our lives easier. But the alarming issue is that it may also limit your life. Research suggests a link between sitting for long hours and the increased risk of cancer by 66%. Sitting has been associated with a 32% greater risk of endometrial cancer, and a 24% high risk of colon cancer.
While Electromagnetic Radiations (EMR) emitted by computers and laptops bring another set of issues. Computers emit both – low-frequency and radio-frequency EMR. Experts around the world have classified EMR as a possible carcinogen for humans. Other research links computer screens and cancer, particularly brain tumors.
As per the research, the monitor screens emit fluctuating magnetic fields, which induce electrical current flows in exposed tissues. The research maintains that there are no signs of a sudden increase in brain tumor incidence, but prolonged exposure may be harmful.
So now that you know that sitting in front of the computer screen constantly is making you fat and increasing your risk of cancer, don’t you think taking a break to just walk a few hundred steps is mandatory?
Sleep disturbances and stress
Sleep plays a vital role in the healing of your body. When you sleep, your brain can relax. That’s when your body’s immune system can fight off harmful substances to protect your body. In the absence of a healthy sleep schedule, your immune system will be compromised.
Your sleep is regulated by melatonin, a hormone which induces sleep. But the artificial blue light emitted by computer screens can suppress its release. This in turn can interfere with the body’s natural internal clock.
When you spend a long time in front of the computer screen, especially in the evening, the release of melatonin is greatly delayed. This makes sleeping a challenge at night. Working late can deprive the body of regular sleep. You might develop symptoms of stress and depression.
Weak bones Your body’s bones
Bones grow throughout your childhood. They continue to grow until the end of your teenage years, reaching their maximum density in early adulthood.
The strength of your bones depends not only on your nutritional intake, but also physical activity. Long sitting hours can be detrimental to your bone health. It has been found that a sedentary lifestyle due to continuous sitting can weaken your bones.
A survey involving 484 boys, aged 15 to 18, found those who spend more time in front of screens, had higher BMIs and lesser bone density than boys who spent more time outside. The latter of which take part in many more physical activities.
Kids with weaker bones faced an increased risk of fracture and osteoporosis in their later life. All of a sudden, limiting screen time for growing children seems like a necessity.
Diabetes and heart problems
A sedentary lifestyle due to long sitting hours in front of the computer reduces your body’s ability to move the glucose from your blood vessels into your cells. Research has reported that three or more hours of daily screen time for kids can be linked to increased body fat and type 2 diabetes.
The research focused on 4500 kids, all aged between 9 to 10 years. As the kids’ screen time increased, their body fat did, too. Screen time was also linked to the fluctuations in the levels of leptin- a hormone that controls appetite and influences insulin resistance. If you sit for too long in front of your screens without any kind of physical activity, you might be at greater risk of developing diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
People who spend long hours working on a computer, face the risk of developing a condition called deep vein thrombosis (DVT). This condition is commonly seen in people who take long flights in cramped seats. With this condition, a blood clot forms in the veins located deep inside your body.
In case of constant inactivity, huge blood clots typically develop in veins located in the lower leg or thighs. If a DVT clot reaches the lungs, it can be fatal. So your best bet for safeguarding yourself against DVT is to not sit for long stretches of time. Exercise regularly, and take frequent breaks while at work.
Diabetes and cardiovascular disease
If you sit for too long in front of your screens without any kind of physical activity, you might be at greater risk of developing diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Clots People who spend long hours working on a computer, face the risk of developing a condition called deep vein thrombosis (DVT). This condition is commonly seen in people who take long flights in cramped seats.
With this condition, a blood clot forms in the veins located deep inside your body. In case of constant inactivity, huge blood clots typically develop in veins located in the lower leg or thighs. If a DVT clot reaches the lungs, it can be fatal. So your best bet for safeguarding yourself against DVT is to not sit for long stretches of time. Exercise regularly, and take frequent breaks while at work.