Tips for Preventing Back Pain While Working Remotely in Colorado

Posted by MD Pain on July 25, 2023

While many workers are returning to the office, others have increased their productivity and work-life balance by continuing to work from home. But working at home can lead to other issues, like joint and spine pain.

How can workers focus on preventing back pain while working remotely? The first step is to identify causes, then focus on corrective actions to prevent further strain.

Causes of Back Pain When Working From Home

There are many reasons someone could experience chronic and acute back pain from working at home or in a remote office. Common causes of back pain include:

  • Improper posture while sitting for long periods
  • Sedentary lifestyle during working hours
  • Inadequate back support in your computer chair
  • Non-ergonomic workspace setup between monitors, keyboard, mouse, and other job tools
  • Using an ill-fitting phone headset that causes you to tilt your head or neck

Prolonged exposure to these conditions could lead to severe back problems, including degenerative disc disease, which can cause nerve compression of the spinal cord as the discs bulge and apply pressure to the central nerve column.

Prolonged nerve compression could lead to other spinal cord disorders that permanently affect your mobility and sensation, including sending shooting pains through your limbs and extremities or causing dull, throbbing aches in your back.

Ways To Prevent Back Pain From Sitting All Day

Many people experience back pain in sedentary jobs because they stay in one place for too long, often assuming incorrect postures while sitting. Preventing back pain while working remotely requires that patients get up, stretch, improve their posture, and use posture aids. The following are some steps you can take to improve your posture and relieve back pain:

  • Standing up to stretch at least once each hour
  • Using a corrective posture vest to hold your spine in the correct position
  • Investing in a new computer chair with proper lumbar support and adjustable arm heights
  • Using a cushion to support appropriate hip positioning in your chair
  • Visiting the gym or doing moderate exercise outside of working hours to build core and spine strength (yoga, Pilates, and strength training all support the spine when performed correctly)
  • Reorganizing your workspace so you don’t twist your spine to look at screens or reach for job tools
  • Upgrading to a standing desk

If possible, break up your day by going for a quick walk during lunch or doing a 15-minute yoga session around the middle of your shift when you can step away from your workspace. Increasing your movement and realigning your spine are important for reducing your potential for work-related back pain.

Treatment Options for Chronic and Acute Back Pain

If you find yourself suffering from back pain due to work, you have several treatment options. For mild pain, you can use hot or cold packs to relieve your pain symptoms temporarily. You can also add exercise to your routine, as building the muscles in your core and back will help keep your spine aligned properly while you sit at your desk.

Your sleep patterns can also have a major effect on your posture. Being tired all the time can cause you to slouch, leading to spinal compression and weak muscles. Sleeping on a firm mattress on your side or back (not on your stomach) can improve your sleep and help straighten your posture during the day.

You could require pain management services and physical therapy if you have more serious back pain due to nerve compression. A physical therapist can teach you the appropriate exercises to practice good posture and help you relieve some of the additional pressure on your spine from poor posture. For severe pain, you might need pain management services like medication, injections, or surgery.

Contact MD Pain for Pain Management Services in Englewood, CO

Depending on your pain level, consider implementing some of these tips for preventing back pain while working remotely. At MD Pain, we strive to provide patients with a custom pain management plan, including medications, physical therapy, spinal manipulation, targeted injections, and even back surgery. For help with back pain in the greater Denver area, call our office in Englewood, CO, at 303-750-8100 or contact us online.