When you work an office job, there may be less inherent danger than in other occupations, such as construction. However, there is a risk of injury in every position, and clerical work is no exception.
Working on a computer puts you at risk for different kinds of injuries. Rather than a single trauma, you are more likely to develop repetitive stress injuries. Part of the risk stems from the awkward positions in which you may force your body to assume while working. Making ergonomic adjustments to your workstation reduces your risk of injury by keeping your body in a more natural position that puts less stress on it.
To avoid glare on your computer monitor, the brightest light source should be to its side. Placing your monitor too close or too far away can cause eye strain. According to the Mayo Clinic, it should be approximately an arm’s length away from your face. You should not have to crane your neck up or down to look at your monitor. It should be approximately at eye level but can be slightly lower, especially if you wear bifocals.
Whenever possible, it is best to have an office chair that is adjustable so you can fit it to your knees. Your armrests should allow your shoulders to relax while the arms rest gently on them. The height of the chair should make your thighs parallel to the floor and allow your feet to rest flat on the floor. The back of your chair should support the curves of your spine, especially the lumbar region.
Your keyboard and computer mouse should be on the same surface, as close to your body as possible so you don’t have to reach for them. If you have to write or type while talking on the phone, you should use a headset or put your phone on speaker rather than cradling the handset between your head and shoulder, which puts strain on your neck.