Working from home can lead to chronic back problems, doctors warn

In a world affected by the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic, the culture of working from home has changed the routines of daily life as we knew it. The familiar feeling of commuting to the office, the buzzing at work or the tense silence in conference rooms or the noise of the canteen, shift work and breaks in between have become rare. People lose more than a normal work environment in this new normal as their lifestyle and health are severely affected.

Dr. Swati Bhat, director (south) of the Interventional Pain and Spine Center (IPSC) and director of IPSC Varsity, said she has seen an increase in patients in the 20 to 40 age group who complain of back pain.

“When you sit for long periods of time, pressure builds up on the intervertebral discs of the spinal cord. These discs are very important parts that aid mobility. With very limited mobility, the bones would put pressure on and suppress the intervertebral discs. People who work from home also usually do not pay attention to diet and sufficient water consumption. This adds up to the pre-existing problems and the discs become dehydrated and weak. ”Bhat told Network 18 in an interview.

She blames a lack of physical activity, poor nutrition and incorrect posture for the chronic back problems, but warns that the damage to the spinal cord can sometimes be irreversible. She advises people who have had back pain for more than a week to make an appointment with a doctor immediately. Postponing a consultation unnecessarily does more harm than good.

Doctors insist that those who work long hours from home should watch their diet and stay hydrated, and advise them to change work positions every few hours to give their back a rest.

“Maybe after 2 hours you will move out of your bed and into the dining area. And then into the living room. Make sure you are drinking enough water to stay dehydrated. Whether you work outside or stay at home, the tissues in your body will keep working for you. Therefore, good food and enough water is a must. Never skip your meals. That one phone call asking you to have a quiet lunch is never going to happen. It barely takes 10 minutes to have a meal. Got it in time. Make sure you have all of the good foods on your plate, ”said a health official.