In terms of the activities they observe, offices can be described as “plans, projects, budgets, accounting, personnel, and areas where many similar works and processes are carried out.” In terms of functionality, offices can be thought of as human-machine systems that enable the production and flow of information as well as the realisation of these operations. All employees, from the top management to the entry-level staff, oversee creating correspondence, filing, computing, saving, copying, and communicating, among other tasks. Many occupational disorders are contracted in this line of work, either knowingly or subconsciously.
What risk factors are there for office workers?
- unsuitable sitting position,
- thermal conditions,
- feeling of excessive workload,
- mental fatigue,
- working in front of the screen for a long time without taking a break,
- inappropriate posture,
- repetitive movements during working hours,
- inappropriate desk arrangement,
- reaching movements that force the body structure,
- many health problems that started with mild pain at first and that may cause loss of workforce,
- working with devices with screens and keyboards,
- the unsuitability of the environment in terms of heat, humidity, light, and comfort.
- Wrists should not be bent or held against the table edge,
- The knee and hip should be at the same level or slightly higher than the knee,
- The elbow should be bent 90 degrees and the forearm should be parallel to the floor,
- The arms should not be held above or below the table surface,
With some simple exercises to do, at least the occurrence of muscle injuries can be prevented:
It should be done one by one, with the neck facing forward, backward, towards both shoulders and the earlobe tilted towards the shoulder, wait for five seconds at the end points, and return to the starting position. Lifting towards the earlobe for the shoulders, backward circles with the shoulders can be done. While sitting upright, the back muscles can be worked so that the hands at the waist, elbows back, shoulder blades approach each other in the middle of the back.
Chest and back muscles can be exercised with a slight pushing motion by combining the hands alternately at chest level, chin level and eye level. Arm and wrist muscles can be stretched by bending the hands one by one, from the wrist up and down with the help of the other hand. The trunk muscles can be stretched with standing arms up and to the side.
What are the examples of diseases that office workers can be exposed to?
- Sick building syndrome: Sick building syndrome in people who work in closed environments; a condition that gives symptoms such as weakness, headache, feeling of drowsiness, nausea, dry skin, stinging eyes, congestion, or runny nose occurs.
- Musculoskeletal diseases: In offices; muscle strains, tendon inflammations called tendinitis, nerve compressions called carpal tunnel or ulnar tunnel syndrome, waist and neck hernias and calcifications, cartilage abrasions, primarily in the knees, occur frequently. Muscle diseases in the elbow, forearm, and wrist due to constant keyboard use are very common. Unbalanced and unhealthy diet, bad habits, heavy sports that can strain the body, heavy housework, sleep problems and not getting enough rest also increase the frequency of musculoskeletal diseases.
- Circulatory system diseases: Continuous stress is one of the most important factors that increase hypertension and cardiovascular diseases.
- Allergic diseases: The collective presence of employees in closed and narrow spaces, carpet upholstery, materials such as carbon and photocopy papers, paint, ink, and especially Legionnaires’ disease bacteria transmitted from air conditioners are the sources of allergic diseases.
- Psychological diseases: The state of constant stress causes problems such as depression, anger, unhappiness, and disharmony in people. This causes serious friction in social and bilateral relations. Since psychosocial risks cannot be evaluated correctly, adequate solutions cannot be developed to protect psychosocial health in workplaces.
Can you claim compensation if you are injured while working in the office or if you get sick for any reason related to the workplace?
Yes, you may be entitled to claim compensation. Workers’ compensation is an insurance that aims to protect the worker in such situations, and as mentioned above, you may be entitled to compensation if you become ill. You can find out what kind of information and documents are needed regarding your illness or injury by contacting personal injury lawyers in Perth.
The types of injuries and illnesses you may suffer as an office worker may be similar to the types of injuries in everyday life. For this reason, it is more difficult to distinguish from injuries or diseases that occur, for example, in the factory or on the construction site. For this reason, you can get information about the process from no win no fee lawyers in Perth. In addition, the compensation process you will request can be followed by competent people.