Do you spend most of your time in front of the computer screen? Are you a gamer going at the keyboard all day? Do you run your business online?
The Internet is a great place to find information and stay connected with your friends. However, they can get you hooked to your screen for longer than necessary.
It is no news that excessive computer usage can bring you physical and emotional side effects. So, if you find yourself addicted to or if you overuse your computer you need to step away from the computer and do some standing desk exercises.
Let us move forward together from here to find out ways to get away from your computer. Read on to find out why and how.
How Harmful is it Sitting All Day at Your Computer?
Before knowing the ways to step away from your desk, you need to understand why you should do so. Here follows the reasons that are harmful if you excessively use your computer.
Remaining in a position for extended hours can have a significant adverse effect on your body. It will negatively impact the postures of your neck, back, and spine.
Bad posture puts unnecessary and unhealthy pressure on joints and ligaments. This causes pain and discomfort like back pain. It can make your shoulders rounded and your back hunched.
Excessive screen time can cause headaches in some cases can lead to migraines. This is caused due to digital eye strain. Usually, headaches are a symptom of sore and strained eyes.
Computers and other screens are a reason for the onset of migraines in young adults. More than 70 percent of the people who spend time in front of computer report headaches.
Body aches due to excessive screen time could be because of uncomfortable chairs and poor sitting posters. However, the main reason is inactivity. Sitting in the same position for a long time damages your musculoskeletal health.
Sitting in one position without many movements even for 20 minutes can reduce the flexibility of your ligaments and tendons. It only gets worse as you sit for hours on a stretch.
Higher levels of screen time and bad posture can increase the risk of heart diseases. Sitting in front of your computer while hybrid working for long hours and spending time in front of phones during leisure time increases fatigue. Moreover, fatigue and inactiveness can lead to heart conditions.
Research by the University of Glasgow suggests that discretionary screen time is closely associated with cardiovascular disease and cancer.
Damage in Brain
Consistently spending several hours in front of a computer with a hybrid workforce can lead to eye fatigue, irritation, and blurred vision, and nausea. The computer screen is nothing but a light source, staring at it for a longer time directly can damage your nerves. It can impair your brain function and even brain structure.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome or repetitive stress disorder is a condition caused by a pinched nerve in the wrist. It leads to acute pain in the arm and hand.
Laptop users are more prone to this syndrome than desktop users. This is due to the smaller keyboards and difficulty in manoeuvring the mouse.
Weight gain is a common problem among people who spend excessive time in front of the computer. The chances of weight gain due to the unhealthy computer-time even if you get enough exercise throughout the week. Hence, it is vital to step away from the computer as often as possible.
Effects on Mental Health
Screen time directly links to anxiety. This is especially true for children and teenagers.
Moderate to severe cases of depression is linked to depression. Long screen time causes a lower level of optimism and satisfaction in people.
Screen time is closely linked to sleep deprivation. It delays the release of melatonin and pushes back bedtime. This can lead to insomnia.
Heavy use of computers can lead to the worst characteristics of stress management in flexible working models. It will not only stress your eyes and body, but it can also burn you out.
What You Should Do for Your Well-being?
Identify Why and Analyze the risk
Firstly, step away from the computer by understanding how too much time in front of the computer can affect you. Analyze the above-mentioned effects and see the things that are affecting you.
Make a List of Things to Do on Your Computer
Keep track of the things that you are doing to step away from the computer. Do you keep your Facebook or Twitter open in a different tab while working? Are you scrolling through New York Times or Forbes? Does it distract and you demand more time from you?
Close these tabs. This will not only decrease your screen time it will also increase your productivity. Make a list of things you want to do on your computer and if you need a break from work step away from your desk.
Make a Schedule and Follow it Strictly
With the list of things gathered, make a schedule. You can make a list on the computer itself or a better choice would be to use a pen and paper and stick it on your work table. Follow the rules you make strictly.
Use Apps to Your Advantage
Use apps that will help you step away from the computer. Tons of apps and add-ons are available that can help you cut down your time on the computer. Also, uninstall addictive apps and block addictive websites.
Some of the add ons include StayFocused, LeechBlock, SelfControl, RescueTime, and Freedom.
Make Access Difficult
This is a simple and one of the most effective tricks to reduce computer usage. Delete shortcuts to apps that you tend to use more, it can be Facebook or some game you like to play.
When we say take breaks, we mean real effective breaktime. Get away from your computer, shut it down and do a painting or knit a sweater.
Do not scroll through social media even on your phone. Focus only on your hobbies that do not involve screens.
Now, let's lock the screen
Step away from the computer now and then because more screen time means no time for all the other wonderful things in life. All these measures will make your screen time less and the limited time effective.
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