Your desk-job survival guide …

If you reside in a bustling urban city like Singapore, it’s highly likely that you’re spending nearly 8 hours a day, 5 days a week, in an office setting. Even if you’re working from home, the risk of developing “office syndrome” is just as prevalent. Without even realising it, you might be experiencing discomfort and pain associated with prolonged sitting and poor posture.

Sound familiar? You’re not alone.

Picture this: you’ve been sitting at your desk for hours, hunched over like a shrimp, only to realise that your back feels like it’s auditioning for a role in a horror movie. Yep, that’s office syndrome for you!

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But don’t worry, we’ve got your back—literally. Dive into this blog to address these issues head-on and transform your daily routine from aches to ease with our ergonomic solutions.

Hold your horses, what exactly is “office syndrome”?

Office syndrome refers to the desk-job dilemmas and physical and mental health issues that arise from extended desk work, computer usage, and repetitive tasks, often in an office setting. Think of it as the unwanted souvenir from your 9-to-5 grind.

What are the signs of “office syndrome”?

1. Neck pain or stiffness

Poor posture or straining to see the computer screen can cause muscles in the neck to become tense and stiff. 

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2. Shoulder pain or tension

Similar to neck pain, this can result from hunching over your desk or not having armrests at the correct height. This can make your shoulders feel like they’re carrying the weight of the world (or at least your workload).

3. Upper and lower back pain 

Prolonged sitting, especially with poor lumbar support, can strain the muscles and ligaments in your back. If your back had a voice, it would probably be yelling, “Why are you doing this to me?”

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4. Headaches or migraines 

Tension headaches can result from eye strain, poor posture, or stress from working long hours without breaks. It’s like your head is staging a protest against bad work habits.

5. Eye strain or discomfort

Staring at a computer screen for prolonged periods without sufficient blinking can dry out and strain your eyes. Your eyes might feel like they’re trying to win a staring contest with your monitor.

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6. Wrist pain or numbness (Carpal Tunnel Syndrome)

Repetitive typing or mouse use can compress the median nerve in the wrist, leading to pain and numbness. 

7. Fatigue or exhaustion

Sitting too long without moving can sap your energy like a vampire at a blood bank, leading to general tiredness, reduced circulation, and a decrease in overall energy levels. 

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8. Poor posture

Slouching, hunching forward, and sitting with a rounded back can cause muscle imbalances and discomfort. You might start to resemble a question mark instead of an exclamation point.

9. Reduced flexibility or mobility

Prolonged inactivity can lead to stiffness and reduced range of motion in the neck, shoulders, back, and legs. Think the Tin Man from “The Wizard of Oz” in need of some oil.

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10. Stress or anxiety

Constant physical discomfort can make you feel like a ticking time bomb of frustration and irritability.

Here’s how to break free from office syndrome!

1. Arrange an ergonomic workstation setup to maintain proper posture

Use an ergonomic chair with proper lumbar support, ensuring your feet rest flat on the floor and your knees are at a 90-degree angle. Position your monitor at eye level and an arm’s length away to avoid neck strain, and adjust your desk height so your elbows form a 90-degree angle when typing.

Consider wearing a back brace at your desk to improve posture and encourage proper alignment throughout the workday.

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2. Take regular breaks to reduce eye strain and prevent muscle tension

Use the 20-20-20 rule for eye strain

Every 20 minutes, take a 20-second break to look at something 20 feet away. This simple practice helps reduce eye strain by giving your eyes a break from the screen, allowing them to relax and refocus.

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Take microbreaks for muscle relief

Take a 1-2 minute break every 30 minutes. Whether you’re at the office or working from home, a short walk can promote blood circulation and reduce muscle stiffness, keeping you refreshed and more productive.

3. Incorporate stretching exercises and engage in regular physical activity

Strengthening your core muscles outside of work is crucial for supporting good posture. Make the most of your gym or Pilates membership with exercises like planks, bridges, and abdominal crunches, which are exceptionally beneficial.

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During your workday, incorporate effective stretching exercises. These stretches can significantly improve flexibility and reduce muscle tightness, helping you stay comfortable and energised.

4. Stay hydrated and maintain a balanced diet to support overall health

Choose your favourite beverage—whether it’s coffee, tea, juice, a protein shake, or plain water—and keep it in a bottle or cup within easy reach to remind yourself to stay hydrated.

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Additionally, don’t skip your lunch. It’s your primary source of energy, essential for keeping you energised and focused throughout the day.

5. Practice relaxation techniques to manage stress effectively

Try deep breathing when feeling overwhelmed and play some relaxing music with your earpiece or headset to reduce stress and mental fatigue.

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6. Consider trying Estetica’s Meridian Detox Body Treatment for additional relief

Regular massage therapy helps reduce muscle tension, improve circulation, and promote relaxation, which can mitigate the discomfort associated with prolonged sitting and poor ergonomics.

Estetica’s Meridian Detox Body Treatment utilises bojin TCM to release knots in deep tissues and muscles, which in turn relieves aches and tensions, while accelerating the body’s natural self-healing process and detoxifying the body from the inside out.

During the treatment, a special Meridian tool is used together with an invigorating ginger essential oil, which helps to soothe tired muscles, relieve anxiety, eliminate toxins and improve digestion.

Fix your office fatigue syndrome; say goodbye to back pain, muscle aches, and tension with our 60-min Meridian Detox Body Treatment $98 (U.P. $120). Purchase eVoucher to enjoy additional $10 off at only $88 for new female Estetica customers aged 21 years old and above.

As we spend a significant portion of our time working, it’s essential to make the most of it. Don’t underestimate the impact of these small changes—they can lead to substantial improvements.

Prioritise your health today by implementing these adjustments for a more comfortable, productive, and enjoyable work experience.

In good hands,