ERGONOMICSThe word ergonomics is the coupling of two (2) Greek words, “ergon” whichmeans work and “nomoi” the meaning of which is natural law. According to theinternational Ergonomics Association , Ergonomics “is the scientific disciplineconcerned with the understanding of interactions among Humans and otherelements of a system, and the profession that applies theory, principles, data andmethod to designs in order to optimize human well being and overall systemperformance.”(Wikipedia) Ergonomics seek to find the perfect fit between people, equipment and theenvironment. It takes into consideration the arrangement of equipment, so thatthe interaction between user and the equipment is one which is healthy,comfortable and efficient.As students nurses were taught proper positioning and body mechanics to preventinjury when lifting and moving immobilized patients, as the workplace incooperates information technology into nursing system , so must we learn theproper usage or ergonomics involved to reduce or prevent work related injury oraccidents. COMPUTER WORKSTATIONWorkstation Environment Whenever possible workstation should be located in an area, in with minimal interference from light and glare from the sun or other light sources There should proper ventilation and air circulationEquipment in the workstation must be positioned in a way to allow one to sit in aneutral position.The used of body mechanics and good posture is an essential part of ergonomicsand paramount to reduce the incidents of musculoskeletal injury.
Keep hands, wrist and forearms in line, straight and parallel or slightly below the level of the floor. Keep head level, or slightly bent, facing forward. Position yourself so that hips are slightly higher than the knees and with feet on the floor Lean back slightly when seated, to open up the hips and reduce pressure on the pelvis Do not sit in a rigid or upright position Do range of motion exercises whiles seated. Do not cross legs or ankles Take frequent breaks, every ten (10) to fifteen (15) minutes. Stretch during the breaks Change position frequentlyDesk: a proper desk must have adequate leg space and enough space for properplacement of computer and its accessories. Desk should be large enough to place monitor directly in front you, within good viewing distance .Do not place higher than your head. Desk top should be able to accommodate frequently used equipment without the need to over reach. As much as possible do not store equipment under the deskChairs: a good should provide support for the back, legs, buttock and arms. Use armrest if available Armrest should be soft, the allows arms to be close to the body Position the seat of the chair, so feet rest comfortable on the floor Backrest should follow the natural curvature of the spine and allow lumbar support; if not place lumbar support just below the waist Allow one(1) to three(3) inches between your knee and the back of your knee
Monitors: placement of monitor to prevent eye strain and over reaching Place monitor at right angle to light source or window Monitor should be placed at least twenty(20) inches away from user Align monitor, keyboard and mouse Lightening: Moderately bright light, which is a mixture of incandescent and fluorescent lightening.Keyboard: When choosing a keyboard, keep in mind how and where it is going tobe place Place the keyboard slightly below the elbow Do not raise the back or tilt the keyboard so that the back is higher than the front. Keep wrist straight and at the same level as your elbowMouse or Pointer Place the mouse /pointer at the same level as the keyboard; next to the keyboard if possible Alternate the hand which is used for the mouseTelephone Use headphone or speaker phone for long conversations Place phone within close distance
HEALTH PROBLEMS WHICH CAN ARISE FROM IMPROPER COMPUTER USED Eye StrainEye strain is basically tiredness of the eyes. This can lead to headaches and othercomplications. Symptoms include: Sore , irritated eyes Difficulty focusing Dry ,watery eyes Blurred vision Sensitivety to light Head, neck and back pain.Prevention and treatment of eye Strain Take frequent breaks Look away from the computer every twenty minutes Do eye strengthening exercises Apply warm wash cloth to dry, tired eyes Change lights to reduce glare and harsh lighting Use a glare filter on computer screen Carpal Tunnel SyndromeCarpal tunnel Syndrome is pain, tingling, numbness or weakness in the fingers andhand, cause by pressure on the median nerve. One of the causes is repetitivemovements of the hand. It can occur if the hands are held lower than the wrist orby making the same movement repeatedly. Treatment includes: Maintain wrist health by using range of motion exercises Keep hand in the neutral position as much as possible Wear wrist splint to immobilize the wrist
Use the entire hand when holing items When at the computer, keep wrist straight, with hand slightly higher than your wrists. Shift hand usage when frequently when making repeated movement Rest between activity Apply cold compresses to relieve pain and reduce swelling Back PainBack pain can be caused by: Poor posture Pressure on spinal nerve Overuse ,muscle strain, injuryTreatment includes the following: Heat pad or ice pack Exercise Physical therapy Rest Practice good posture/ body mechanics Learn ways to relieve stress Deep Vein ThrombosisDeep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) is the formation or presence of a blood clot withinthe vascular system. (Taber’s 1993) The clot can block circulation or get lodged ina blood vessel in any of the organs of the body. DVT can be a result of: Sitting or inactivity for long periods of time Long rides Surgery Varicose vein Leg injury
Treatment Take frequent breaks Perform range or motion exercises Do not cross legs and ankles Blood thinners(medication) SurgeryReferencesHuman Factors and Ergonomics. WikipediaEn.wikipedia,org/wiki/ErgonomicsSafety and Health Topic/Ergonomicswww.osha.gov/SLTC/ergonomicsWhat is Ergonomics – Ergonomics Basicsergonomics.about.com/od/ergonomicbasics/a/ergo101.htmWebMD