Can Your Office Be Good For Your Health
In the United States alone, out of four workers, one suffers from work related stresses during the court of their lifetime. But on the flip side, the office does not need to be a place of stress and suffering. This article seeks to turn your office into a place that improves your health and boosts your mood.
The Cost of Poor Health
In the United Kingdom, about 400,000 persons believe that their illness is a result of work related stress. As a result, about 13.7 million work days are lost each year. Each year, over 26 billion pounds are lost by employers and this is a result of mental health problems with staff. This translates to 1035 pounds for each member of the work force.
It has been discovered that stress is the leading cause of migraines which is suffered by 6 million people in the United Kingdom. This is estimated to cost the economy 750 million pounds each year.
The Fundamentals of a Healthy Office
The Office Desk
At the office desk, when you lean at about 135 degree backwards, there is less stress on your spine as compared to when you lead forward. Nevertheless, you should change positions regularly. By using a pneumatic chair, you can adjust the position of the chair to be more comfortable position.
For a healthier work place, make sure you rest your eyes every 20 minutes. The monitor should be placed about 20 to 30 inches from your eyes. It has been discovered that computer work causes eye discomfort for over 50% of users. For the keyboard and mouse, they should be placed at no more than 20 degrees above the horizontal.
It is recommended that you get up and stretch every 30 minutes. This will cause your spinal cord to relax. Some offices have implemented standing work stations as this increased stamina and makes you more focused.
For maintaining focus, natural lighting is the best option. Research has shown that natural light helps workers to concentrate up to four time longer than when using artificial lightening.
Research has revealed that plans can be used to reduce blood pressure and increase reaction time of employees by 12%. When foliage plants are introduced, dust can be reduced by up to 20%.
When office scents are improved with lavender oils, it has been discovered that it reduces computer errors by 25% because it has a relaxing effect.
With respect to color choice, blue is the best color to choose as it has been discovered to reduce blood pressure and ease mental tension. In order to beat fatigue, red and yellow are suitable due to their energizing effect.
This has the ability to provide mental stimulation. Especially for those who are involved in a routine tasks thereby reducing fatigue and boredom.
Open Plan vs Closed Plan
Pros – Open plan leads to increased motivation and has been discovered through research that this leads to a more relaxed atmosphere between employees.
Cons – For those who places emphasis on privacy, this is not a suitable system for them. Especially for talented by introverted workers.
Pros – There is increased levels of privacy and personalization. Most prefer workplaces that are exclusively theirs.
Cons – This can lead to isolation. It is believed that this has turned many professionals into introverts.
How Employees Contribute
• Employers can offer discount memberships for gyms, larger companies can afford to have their own gyms and this results in an increased productive level of the employees.
• This needs to be considered when building cafeterias so that employees can make healthy choices. Offering fruits in vending machines can be very helpful also.
• It is necessary to ensure the employees have access to counselling services as this gives a reassuring relief especially if the problem is bad.
• Employers should imbibe the culture of promotion because research has revealed that the people working in organizations with a higher rate of promotion have a 20% reduction in the development of heart disease.
• It has been discovered through research that flexible work hours make you handle stress levels better.