Did you know that sitting for long hours might cause migraines and other types of headaches? Most office workers are experiencing the adverse effects of a sedentary lifestyle, and one of these is the excruciating headaches. Without giving it proper attention, it may cause issues with work productivity and quality. Various headaches affect office workers, aside from the other common issues like back pain, neck tension, and various musculoskeletal disorders. If your work is more of a desk job, it is crucial that you become aware of the ways on how to avoid chronic migraines and other types of headaches in the workplace.
You may already experience that while you sit for long hours at work, there is some tension created in the neck and your back. This is mainly due to bad posture, poor circulation, and slow metabolism. And because the neck muscles are directly connected to the head, the pressure may build up in the head and cause headaches. Such type of tension can also trigger migraines, which are often causing debilitating and excruciating pain.
Why are Office Workers Prone to Headaches?
All people can experience headaches. However, office workers are one of the most susceptible to it. Headaches are actually the most common complaints among office workers. According to medical experts, it manifests a variety of both physical and mental health conditions.
Some of the causes of headaches are discussed below:
Eye strain due to computer use is a common reason why office workers experience headaches. Working for several hours on the computer usually leads to eye strain and headaches. As time goes by, the eyes may get affected, become weak, and may require wearing of eyeglasses to fix impaired vision.
#2 Stress at the workplace
Another common cause of headaches in the workplace is stress. This can be due to physical, mental, and emotional factors. When you're working with some stressful tasks, you are prone to experience tension headaches.
Some workers can also experience headaches due to hunger. As a matter of fact, this is very common among office workers, especially those who skip meals during the day. When you're always rushing to go to work without having breakfast or fail to take lunch as well, then you may end up with a throbbing pain in your forehead or sides of the head.
#4 Lack of sleep
Although taking a nap is not always allowed in the workplace, many working professionals believe that it is an integral factor to consider. Some types of work can be stressful, causing you to get insufficient sleep at night. Stress can keep employees up at night, and when they are not allowed to take a nap during the day, they can get a headache. This leads to poor performance at work.
A well-rested employee can perform well on his job. This is why employees should promote good sleeping habits to make sure that they are ready for everyday tasks.
Often, employees are so focused on their job that they even forget to drink and rehydrate themselves. A busy work schedule should not be an excuse for employees to get themselves hydrated. Dehydration is also a common cause of headaches; thus, this should be given proper attention. Make sure to drink eight glasses of water to keep
#6 Poor lighting
Poor lighting is one of the leading causes of eye strain. This can also cause a headache. Fluorescent lighting is proven to cause migraines and headaches. This is due to the minute flickering from a fluorescent bulb. To solve this issue, workers are advised to use LED lighting instead. They are safer and more economical to use.
#7 Lack of Movement
Avoid being stuck at a desk the whole day since this also can cause headaches. Lack of exercise can contribute to a sedentary lifestyle. As mentioned before, sitting for long hours can lead to being sedentary, and tension in the head may develop.
If your job requires having phone calls and virtual meetings, you will probably be wearing a headset most of the time. Although a headset is an essential accessory, it may pressure the head that may lead to headaches. Make sure to remove the headset when not in use to avoid too much pressure from it.
Type of Headaches that can be experienced by Office Workers
There are different kinds of headaches that office workers may experience. Every worker should be knowledgeable about preventing them from making sure that they will be productive and efficient at work.
#1 Tension headaches
Tension headaches are characterized by a dull and aching sensation in your entire head. Compared to other types of headaches, tension headaches are not throbbing. In some instances, sensitivity and tenderness around the scalp, neck, and shoulder muscles may also be observed. This type of headache is frequently triggered by stress.
Migraine pain refers to an intense pulsing pain felt from the deep within your head. The pain induced by migraines can last for hours or even days. A person's ability to perform daily routine is often limited to your ability by migraines. Migraine headaches are throbbing and usually one-sided. Individuals with migraine headaches are commonly sensitive to sound and light. It can also be co-occurred by nausea and vomiting.
#3 Cluster headaches
Cluster headaches are described by severe piercing and burning pain. They often occur behind or around an eye or one side of the face. There can also be redness, swelling, sweating, and flushing on the part affected by the headache. Some people also experience nasal congestion as well as eye tearing while having this type of headache.
#4 Hormone headaches
Women often experience hormone headaches. This is linked to hormonal fluctuations. The common conditions that contribute to this type of headache include pregnancy, menstruation, and taking birth control pills. Menstruation, birth control pills, and pregnancy affect your estrogen levels, which can also cause a headache.
#5 Hypertension headaches
Are you knowledgeable that high blood pressure can likewise cause headaches? This is actually a type of headache that signals an emergency. When a person's high blood pressure is too high, he should be observed for hypertension headaches, too. Tasks in the workplace can sometimes be too demanding that it may lead to having high blood pressure. This headache may also be accompanied by a nosebleed, changes in vision, tingling, numbness, and shortness of breath.
#6 Sinus or allergy headaches
Allergic reactions can also lead to headaches. The pain from this type of headache often occurs in your sinus area or the front of your head.
#7 Caffeine headaches
Are you a coffee-lover? Do you feel you can accomplish better when there's a cup of coffee beside you? Coffee can be a common part of someone's working routine. However, it is also crucial to know that caffeine, the substance from coffee, can affect the brain's blood flow. Drinking too much coffee can result in experiencing a headache and may also trigger migraine headaches. Make sure to limit your coffee intake.
#8 Exertion headaches
Intense physical activity is the main cause of exertion headaches. Activities such as running, weight lifting, and others can trigger this type of headache. Enormous activities cause increased blood flow to the skull, resulting in a throbbing headache on your head.
#9 Post-traumatic headaches
Post-traumatic headaches are acquired due to head injuries. They may feel like migraine or tension headaches and can last up to 12 months after the injury. They can also become chronic when taken for granted.
#10 Rebound headaches
Rebound headaches are also termed as medication overuse headaches. They are described as dull and intensely painful headaches.
How to Avoid Headaches in the Workplace
Headaches can obviously affect someone's work performance in the workplace. However, these headaches can be prevented. Here are some ways every office worker can try:
#1 Get a good night's sleep.
#2 Do not skip breakfast and other important meals.
#3 Avoid being sedentary. Take a break and do some desk exercises.
#4 Choose a good office chair.
#5 Avoid stress.
#6 Switch to an ergonomic standing desk.
#7 Always promote proper posture.
#8 Stay happy and motivated.
All the tips mentioned above will be a big help to ensure better health and productivity in the workplace.