Digital Crave

Is your computer killing you? Check out these ‘ergonomic’ tips

Digital Crave

View gallery

.

Quickly calculate how much time you spend in front of a computer per day. Be honest.

If you work on a PC or Mac, it could be half of the time you're awake.

According to a 2010 American Time Use Survey — published by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics — office workers spend an average of 7.5 hours a day at the computer. A Microsoft Hardware study from the same year found similar results, with nearly half of those surveyed said they were spending more than eight hours a day toiling on a computer.

And that's just at work — what about Facebooking when the kids go to bed? Downloading music from iTunes? Clicking through a little Bejeweled? Looking at photos?

If this sounds familiar, you bet your bitmaps there are health concerns with being so attached to our computers. And so take heed to these following ergonomic tips to healthier computer use, whether it's during 9 to 5 or 5 to 9 (or both).

Nice mice

View gallery

.

Reduce the odds you'll suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome and other repetitive stress injuries. Choose a computer mouse that's very comfortable to you. Mice should have a curved hump that fits the contours of your palm. Be sure to try it out the mouse first at retail before you buy, even if you decide to buy it online at a later time. Many today are designed for both left- and right-handed users.

Wireless mice might provide fewer movement restrictions on how to use it on the desk. When you use a mouse, try to limit your wrist limit — instead, move your forearm, and with your elbow pivoted.

If it's still uncomfortable to use a mouse or if you experience wrist discomfort, try a trackball instead as you simply roll your fingertips on the top of the peripheral.

The key(board) to success

View gallery

.

On a desktop computer, choose an ergonomic keyboard that could help reduce wrist strain — these typically are curved to more naturally fit the angle of your wrists (place your hands on a desk and you'll see they point inwards). Some ergonomic keyboards have a split keyboard, too.

If you're on a laptop you can always plug in a larger and more ergonomic keyboard when in one location for a while (OK, so it's not ideal for an airplane). Keep in mind, netbooks and iPad cases with keyboards generally have smaller keys, which could prove uncomfortable.

Try to keep your wrists almost floating above the keyboard so your hands can easily move to reach far keys (e.g. the G or H keys) rather than trying to stretch your fingers to reach them because your palms are mounted. You might consider a padded or gelled wrist rest that sits in front of the keyboard.

Finally, learn keyboard shortcuts so it reduces the need for multiple keystrokes.

Have a seat

View gallery

.

It won't cost you much these days, so be sure to pick up a decent office chair with lower back support. And your mom was right -- posture is important, too -- so stop yourself from leaning in towards the monitor. Instead, sit back all the way. If you can, choose a chair with wheels so you could better position yourself for added comfort. Learn about the adjustment features of your chair, if it offers any.

Both your feet should be flat on the floor — vertically challenged folks should use a small step-stool or milk crate to rest your feet on under the desk. Your keyboard and mouse should be at about elbow level, so adjust your chair's height accordingly. When in your chair, be sure to swivel your chair so you're facing the monitor straight-on so you're not putting strain on your neck. Your monitor should be at eye level.

Those who work from home should resist working on a laptop while reclined on a sofa or in bed.

Use adequate overhead lighting so you're not straining your eyes to see the monitor. If the font is too small, enlarge it to avoid eye strain or headaches.

If you use a phone all day, buy a hands-free headset so you're not trying to hold the phone between your neck and ear while typing at the same time.

Stand up for yourself

Take frequent breaks. Get up to get a drink of water, stretch and do some minor neck, back and arm exercises. You can also gently rub your muscles when you need a little break.

Perform these short stretches and exercises repeatedly throughout the day, even if it's rolling your neck around, reaching up to the ceiling or walking around the office to stretch your legs.

Look away from your monitor every couple of minutes and close your eyes every few moments to give them a break, too.

Have any of your own "ergo" tips to share? Feel free to post them in the Comments section below.

Sorry you didn't like this comment. Please provide a reason below.

Are you sure?
Rating failed. Try again.
Request failed. Try again.
We will promote constructive and witty comments to the top, so everyone sees them!
Sorry, we can’t load comments right now. Try again.

    Recommended for You

    • Authorities: Trooper was shot by driver who caused rollover

      PHOENIX (AP) — An Arizona state trooper who was beaten and shot while responding to a traffic collision on Interstate 10 was attacked by a Mexican man who was responsible for the one-vehicle rollover, authorities said.

      Associated Press
    • Pictures of Mcdonald's new Big Macs are already sweeping the internet

      People across the country are already stumbling across McDonald's (MCD) all new Big Macs, which were originally unveiled last November and scheduled for an early 2017 launch.  The Grand Mac, which rests on a larger sesame seed bun, is made with two beef patties that weigh in at one-third of a pound compared to a traditional Big Mac, which has two, 1.6-ounce beef patties. Think of this one as a supersized Big Mac. The Mac Jr. is a essentially a single-layer Big Mac, which may be more ideal for the hands of kids (great news, right?).  Each sandwich has the traditional Big Mac sauce.  McDonald's started testing the Grand Mac and Mac Jr. in more than 120 restaurants in the central Ohio and Dallas

      The Street q
    • Kourtney Kardashian Steps Out with Justin Bieber — But ‘Is Still Serious About Making Things Work with Scott’: Source

      Kourtney Kardashian may have been spotted hitting the town with ex-fling Justin Bieber over the weekend — but the two are now just friends, a source tells PEOPLE. Bieber and Kardashian stopped by West Hollywood hotspot The Peppermint Club on Saturday night, shortly after the reality star left a birthday celebration for Jessica Alba‘s husband Cash Warren. According to a Kardashian source, she and Bieber “hung out together with friends, but didn’t spend the night together.

      People
    • Aaron Rodgers Hasn't Spoken to His Family in 2 Years, Father Confirms

      In a New York Times story about the family rift, the NFL star's dad, Ed Rodgers, said the family hasn't spoken to the Green Bay quarterback since the end of 2014. The public first became aware of a rift in the Rodgers family when Aaron's younger brother, Jordan, appeared as a contestant on ABC's reality show "The Bachelorette" last summer. Before Jordan brought the show's star JoJo Fletcher to his Chico, California, hometown to meet his family, he told her that Aaron would not be there, explaining that he had chosen to distance himself from his family.

      Good Morning America
    • Pakistani mother sentenced to death for daughter's 'honour killing'

      A mother who murdered her own daughter and set her alight for marrying the man of her choice has been sentenced to death, officials said Tuesday, in a case that had revolted many in Pakistan. Zeenat Bibi, aged 16, was doused with kerosene and set alight in June last year in Pakistan's teeming cultural capital Lahore, a little over a week after she wed 20-year-old motorcycle mechanic Hasan Khan against her family's wishes. A judge in an anti-terror court in Lahore sentenced her mother Perveen Bibi to death on murder and terrorism charges, prosecutor Mian Mohammad Tufail told AFP.

      AFP
    • A ring of 50 Chinese factories making fake, toxic brand name sauces has been discovered

      Another food scandal has been uncovered in China. A group of some 50 factories have been found to be manufacturing artificial sauces and flavourings, some with illegal ingredients, in the Chinese city of Tianjin, the Beijing News reports. SEE ALSO: Chinese regulators: Alibaba fails to block fake goods, faces 'credibility crisis' The investigative report revealed that the products were being falsely labelled as popular brands such as Nestlé, Knorr and Lee Kum Kee. It appears that one of the Nestlé products they were counterfeiting is Maggi seasoning sauce, commonly found in Asian supermarkets. Knorr is owned by Unilever, and makes chicken cubes and condiments; Lee Kum Kee is a well-known Hong

      Mashable q
    • Mayor quits golf club as members try to block Obama's entry

      The local mayor and member of the exclusive Maryland country club whose members are preemptively trying to keep President Obama out over his stance on Israel announced that he was dropping out over the controversy. Jeffrey Slavin, the mayor of the Montgomery County town of  Somerset, said he could no longer belong to a community at Woodmont Country Club with such “intolerance,” The New York Post reported. The Washington Post reported that some members of the historically Jewish club were bothered by Obama’s recent decision not to vote on a U.N. resolution criticizing Israeli settlements. “[President Obama] has created a situation in the world where Israel’s very existence is weakened and possibly

      Fox News q
    • Father Who Raised Kidnapped Florida Infant for 18 Years Speaks Out: ‘She’s Still My Child’

      Kamiyah Mobley, the 18-year-old who was abducted as a newborn from a Florida hospital and raised by her kidnapper in a South Carolina home, may have reunited with her biological parents over the weekend — but the man who she called “dad” for her whole life says he’ll always be her father. In a new interview with ABC News, Charles Manigo is opening up about the harsh reality of knowing the girl he believed to be his own daughter for 18 years was really another couple’s child. Mobley was only hours old on July 10, 1998 when authorities say her alleged abductor Gloria Williams posed as a health care worker and took her from a Jacksonville, Florida, hospital maternity ward.

      People
    • Peta Murgatroyd Bra Selfie Reminds Us Post-Baby Body Expectations Are Ridiculous

      The “post-baby body” obsession has, unfortunately, seemingly taken over our culture. Instead of marveling at the fact that women bring forth life from…

      Hello Giggles
    • 'Nature at its best:' Giant gator spotted at Florida nature center

      Floridians have seen their share of giant alligators, but usually not like this.

      WPVI – Philadelphia
    • Aly Raisman and Simone Biles Are Redefining the 2017 SI Swimsuit Issue

      After stunning the world at the Rio Olympics last Summer, gold-medal gymnasts Aly Raisman and Simone Biles are back and better than ever, continuing their pursuit of blowing our minds, this time on the cover of the 2017 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. The girls are taking the modeling world by storm, and we think they are the perfect candidates for this year's famed issue. "Aly and Simone represent all that is beautiful and strong and inspiring in women today," said MJ Day, SI Swimsuit Issue editor. "Women that are not only elite athletes, that are captivating and impressive in their own professional accomplishments (lots and lots of Olympic gold medals between them), but strikingly sexy and

      PopSugar q
    • How Much Money Does the Average American Have in Their Bank Account?

      Curious as to whether you're keeping up with the Joneses? Here's how much the average American has in their bank account and savings account.

      The Cheat Sheet q 53 min ago
    • Everything Aaron and Jordan Rodgers Have Said About Their Family Feud

      Quarterback Aaron Rodgers may have led the Green Bay Packers to a narrow victory during Sunday night’s playoff game against the Dallas Cowboys, but his family did not share in the celebration. According to a new interview with The New York Times published Sunday, Ed Rodgers confirmed that he’s not on speaking terms with his son following the 32-year-old NFL star’s rise in popularity. Word of the family’s rift became public knowledge last spring when the quarterback’s younger brother Jordan appeared on JoJo Fletcher‘s season of The Bachelorette.

      People
    • Red Carpet Flashback! 2002 Sundance Film Festival (26 photos)

      For 10 days every winter, Hollywood's brightest stars pack their finest ski-wear and head to the snowy climes of Park City, Utah, for the annual Sundance Film Festival. With this year’s fest set to kick off on Thursday, we thought we'd flashback 15 years to January 2002, when some very famous faces were fest-bound.

      Yahoo Movies
    • Amber Rose Posts Rare Makeup-Free Selfie -- See the Pic!

      The 33-year-old model was bare faced and glowing in a new snap posted to Instagram on Sunday.

      Entertainment Tonight
    • Connecticut Politician Arrested for Groping a Woman After a Disagreement

      Connecticut Republican politician Christopher von Keyserling was having a political disagreement with a female colleague when the unnamed 57-year-old woman said to him that we’re living in a “a new world,” politically speaking. To that, the 71-year-old member of the representative town meeting and an outspoken commentator on town affairs allegedly responded, “I love this new world, I no longer have to be politically correct,” according to an arrest warrant, says Time.

      Yahoo Style
    • People are showing off photos of their scratched up Jet Black iPhone 7 handsets

      Look, we're just going to go ahead and say it: the Jet Black iPhone 7 and the Jet Black iPhone 7 Plus are the most gorgeous smartphones that have ever been created. This is not open to debate. It's a fact. There's simply nothing else like the sleek glossy finish of Apple's Jet Black iPhones, which reflects just the right amount of light to appear as though the glass face of the phone wraps straight around to the back of the device. It's stunning, but there's a pretty big caveat to that bold statement we made. The Jet Black iPhone 7 and the Jet Black iPhone 7 Plus are the most gorgeous smartphones that have ever been created... for about 3 minutes after you first remove one from the box. After that, Apple's Jet Black finish starts to scratch and scuff like crazy, and it's also a magnet for grease and grime. Apple didn't exactly admit how delicate its Jet Black finish is when it unveiled the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus last September, but it did post a disclaimer on its website. Here's that disclaimer in full: The high-gloss finish of the jet black iPhone 7 is achieved through a precision nine-step anodization and polishing process. Its surface is equally as hard as other anodized Apple products; however, its high shine may show fine micro-abrasions with use. If you are concerned about this, we suggest you use one of the many cases available to protect your iPhone. Translation: the Jet Black finish on the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus is going to scratch. A lot. We've shown you what happens to the Jet Black iPhone finish in a couple of different posts. One showed a Jet Black iPhone 7 Plus after three months , and another showed a Jet Black iPhone 7 Plus after just two months . Both of those posts were scary for potential Jet Black iPhone owners, and now there are even more examples of what Apple's sleek new iPhone finish looks like with normal wear and tear. A post on Reddit from over the weekend asked people to share what their Jet Black iPhones look like now that they've been used. Several people complied, and the photos they shared give us a good idea of what happens to Jet Black iPhones when they're in your hands as opposed to being featured in photos on Apple's website. Reddit user KateWalls shared the highest-quality photos in the thread, and you can see plenty of fine scratching on her Jet Black iPhone 7 Plus — which is only two weeks old. She does note that in person, the scratches are more visible on the antenna bands than they are on the aluminum housing. Here are a couple of examples from her post: There's definitely plenty of scratching there but as you can see, it's much more visible at certain angles to the light. Another user named ctsikh posted one photo of his Jet Black iPhone 7, and you can clearly see some scratching. You can also see how much grease and dirt the Jet Black finish picks up — remember my tweet showing a Jet Black iPhone 7 Plus that had been handled by customers in an Apple store? Yeah. https://twitter.com/zacharye/status/778223454935982080 If those photos don't scare you, this one from Redditor polygonarsenal definitely will: He used a filter to accentuate the scratches, which look downright terrible. This is pretty much the stuff nightmares are made of. There are a bunch more photos in the thread on Reddit , so definitely check them out.

      BGR News
    • Tom Brady Responded To Antonio Brown Posting Mike Tomlin's 'A**holes' Speech On Facebook

      Only historians will ever be able to properly place Antonio Brown’s Facebook Live video into proper context. Well, Steelers coach Mike Tomlin was the victim of Brown’s odd choice, and now the world knows his secret — he doesn’t like the Patriots, who are the Steelers’ opponent in the AFC Championship Game this Sunday.

      UPROXX
    • Drake gave Sasha Obama a shoutout on Instagram, and we’re so jealous!

      As if Sasha Obama wasn’t winning already as a member of the coolest presidential family to ever live in the White House, Drake…

      Hello Giggles
    • How to enable the ‘dark mode’ feature hiding in your iPhone browser right now

      Apple's iOS 10 software is packed full of new features. In fact, there are so many new features that it's impossible to remember them all, which is why we often publish collections of lesser-known tips and tricks. A perfect example is this collection of 5 iPhone features only power users know about  — we always want to help people get the most out of their smartphones. When iOS 10 was first released as a closed beta last summer during WWDC 2016, developers instantly began picking it apart. In doing so, they stumbled upon a fantastic looking "dark mode" feature hiding inside iOS . The good news is it was there. The bad news, as we all know, is that it wasn't enabled when iOS 10 was finally released in September. Rumors suggest that a new " theater mode " might be introduced in iOS 10.3, but nothing has been confirmed at this point. What you might not know, however, is that there's already a dark mode feature hidden inside your iPhone browser. Night Shift is a nifty new feature Apple introduced in iOS 10 that reduces the amount of blue light emitted by an iPhone or iPad display at night. It theoretically helps users sleep better, but it doesn't do anything to make text more visible in low light situations. For that, you need "dark mode," which switches things up and makes the background black with light colored text. Dark mode is available in many third-party iOS apps and even a handful of first-party apps. Sadly, however, there's no system-wide dark mode feature for the time being. That said, there's actually a special dark mode in Safari that most people don't know about, and it'll let you read just about any article on the web in light text on a black background. Here's how to enable it: 1) First, load any article in Safari (if you're reading this Safari on an iPhone or iPad, you're good to go). 2) Tap the reader mode icon in the left corner of the URL bar. You'll then see something that looks like this: 3) Tap the "aA" icon in the right corner of the URL bar and you'll get a drop down menu that looks like this: 4) Tap the black circle all the way to the right in the top row of the drop down menu. Presto — you've just enabled dark mode in Safari: Here's what your screen will look like once you start scrolling around: In-line pictures will still display normally, but the rest of the page will be dark, as pictured above. It's not the system-wide dark mode we've all been waiting for, but people spend a tremendous amount of time reading in Safari, so this should be a big improvement at night.

      BGR News