A lot of us work in an office or at a desk for 8 hours a day. We sit in front of computers and do our job. But could this sort of lifestyle cause your sciatica? And more importantly, what can you do about it without getting a new job?
If you don’t already know, sciatica is caused when there is pressure placed on your sciatic nerve, which runs from your lower back down to your legs and feet. Sciatica is not actually a condition, but rather symptom of another issue.
Here are a few common things that many office workers do that might result in sciatica.
Take Out Your Wallet – No, not to do some online shopping when you should be working. Your wallet can actually cause sciatica if you put it in your back pocket and sit on it all day long.
What you are essentially doing is shifting your pelvis out of alignment and creating muscle imbalances. Sitting with your wallet in your back pocket is one of the most common things that men do that causes sciatica.
Instead just put it on your desk next to your keyboard. Or, if you don’t trust your co-workers for one reason or another, you can just hide it in your jacket pocket. The important thing though is to just sit so that your pelvis is balanced evenly on both sides.
Sit Up Straight – You probably already know that it just doesn’t feel right to sit hunched over in front of a computer all day. But if you don’t have good posture during these 8 hours, you can actually develop poor posture.
This poor posture will cause the pressure in your spine to be distributed unevenly. This may result in the discs between the vertebrae in your spine to bulge and put pressure on your sciatic nerve.
The best way to make sure this doesn’t happen is to sit with good posture. Not only that, but better posture will also help you feel more energetic and you’ll get more work done. I’m sure your boss will keep this in mind when it’s time for that year-end bonus.
Don’t Sit for Too Long – Have you ever spent all day sitting at your desk only to get up at the end of the day to feel a little dizzy and disoriented? If you have, then you’re sitting too much. This isn’t good for your back either.
Too much sitting can cause the piriformis muscle to shorten and contract. Your own piriformis is located in your pelvis and it is a small muscle that rests on top of your sciatic nerve. When this muscle gets too tight, it can start to crush your sciatic nerve. This condition is called piriformis syndrome.
The best way to avoid this is to take breaks every two hours or so. Get up and get a glass of water or take a very short walk around your office or work building. Most companies will give office workers and unofficial 10 or 15 minute break ever two hours. A lot of people don’t take this break because it really isn’t very substantial, but make sure you do.
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