Tips to make teleworking healthier

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The expansion of the coronavirus and restrictions on mobility have put hundreds of workers to telecommute overnight. From TÚV Rheinland, a company specialized in technical, security, quality and certification services worldwide with more than 30 years of presence in Spain, they have prepared a decalogue so that this time when our house becomes our office is the most productive and healthy possible. For Anna Gil, director of Quality and Health, Safety and Environment of TÜV Rheinland in Spain there are ten basic indications:

Dedicate a space: set “office”
According to Gil, it would be about choosing “a part of the house where you have everything you need to work.” The ideal for this expert is that it be a well-lit place, if possible with natural light. And, of course, maintaining order and cleanliness.

Avoid eye strain:
It is recommended to place the work stand in a position that avoids reflections and glare. The screen should be “at a distance of between 50-60 cm in horizontal line of sight,” said this expert. Characters must be easily and clearly appreciated. In this way, the correct distance must be maintained and thus avoid eye strain, neck and head twists.

Maintain the workday structure
From TÜV Rheinland they advise to continue with the same actions as if it were necessary to move to a workplace. Get up, eat breakfast, shower, comb your hair, brush your teeth and dress as if you were going to the office. Not having schedules affects circadian rhythms and emotional stability.

Continue with “muscle hygiene”
Gil advises using an ergonomic seat, in which the back is fully supported. The feet must rest on the floor, keeping the knees at the same level as the hips, at a 90º angle. The arms must be kept at a right angle and supported on the work table. This will help prevent back problems, vision problems, or joint and muscle ailments.

Take care of your ears
Helmets with one earphone per ear are advised for meetings and avoiding turning the volume up. Toggle with the PC speaker. Keep helmets off when not in use.

Take a breath
 Disconnect ten minutes every two hours and leaving what is being done, close the door of the study, change the environment and carry out another activity during that time. Don’t use that break to do household chores! You have to move, walk and stretch to avoid maintaining the same posture for many hours.

Avoid distractions
Gil says that ambient music can help to focus, but television cannot. In general, “avoid broadcasts that have advertising cuts, designed to capture attention.”

Communicate with peers
 There are a multitude of tools that help keep in touch with them. You have to know how to interpret the tone of the conversation, because there will be moments of work and others of relaxation. For the head of Quality and Health, Safety and Environment of TÜV Rheinland in Spain “at the moment, isolation is the main challenge to overcome, so solidarity and cohesion is the most important thing.”

Eat well
Control snacking and avoid eating on impulse. Weekly raise the menu. In this sense, this expert advises “to continue with the usual meal times and not to eat at the work table”: Avoid buying snacks and “junk” food. Carrots, fruit or herbal teas are a good alternative. “A tip: count to ten and look for physical symptoms of hunger,” said this expert.

To do physical exercise
The current situation is not an excuse for sedentary lifestyle. Staying active at home is important, both to “avoid musculoskeletal disorders and to control anxiety.” It is necessary to look for exercises and establish a routine to perform them, since it helps not only to vent, but also strengthens the immune system. .


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