“Ten Tips to Avoid Aches and Pains in the Office”

by Nathan Wei, MD, FACP, FACR

Nathan Wei is a nationally known board-certified rheumatologist and author of the Second Opinion Arthritis Treatment Kit. It's available exclusively at this website... not available in stores.

Click here: Second Opinion Arthritis Treatment Kit

The office can be a "deadly" trap if you have arthritis. Here are some pointers to get you through this dangerous situation...


Adjust the chair to fit. Make sure the chair allows adjustment of the height, backrest, and arm rest. A well-adjusted chair should allow the feet to be planted firmly on the ground with the knees bent at a right angle to the floor and the thighs resting against the cushion. The seat should be rounded in front to prevent cutting into the legs behind the knee and the weight should feel evenly distributed on the seat. The chair’s height should allow wrists to be straight while typing.

2.Computer monitors.

Elevate the monitor so the first line of text is at eye level. The monitor should be 18-24 inches away from the head. This reduces the risk of eyestrain, headaches, and neck and back pain.

3.Consider document holders.

Document holders that attach to the monitor and hold documents in front at eye level can reduce neck pain.


Keyboards should be at elbow level. A wrist rest is mandatory. More about this later. Forearms and wrists should be parallel to the keyboard for typing. An adjustable keyboard platform can go a long way to ensuring a sound ergonomic typing position.

5.Wrist rest.

These cushions help prevent carpal tunnel syndrome by keeping wrists straight as you rest in between using the mouse. Be careful though. The wrist should never rest on the cushion during typing or mouse moving.

6.Foot rests.

These help take the strain off the back and legs if the chair and desk are not the appropriate height.

7.Alternate between using the mouse and using other input (pointing) devices on the keyboard. This provides a break by using different muscles in the arms and hands.

8.Place the mouse next to the keyboard and move your whole arm, not just the wrist and hand, to operate the mouse.

9.Take small breaks during the day. Small breaks of 30 seconds for every 10 to 15 minutes of continuous work at the computer should be sufficient. This reduces fatigue.

10.Set a maximum period of 45 minutes to one hour of continuous work at the computer. At the end of this, take a five minute break. Be sure to stand up and stretch.

Bonus Tips…

•Organize the items used most often so they are within a 14-18 inch reach.

•Do stretching exercises for the upper body, arms, fingers, back, and legs. Yoga is a good option.

•Learn keyboard shortcuts. Knowing this can improve efficiency.

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Click here Second Opinion Arthritis Treatment Kit

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