Most people believe their workload is having a detrimental effect on their health

VIVA Team | 7th May 2019

Two-thirds of the people reckon their workload is impacting their health, a study has found.


Desk workers up and down the country find themselves too busy to take a break and are suffering aches and pains as a result.


Experts who polled professionals, with the research revealing that a whopping seven in 10 put it down to staring at computer screens for prolonged periods.


Half of those surveyed said they don’t stand enough to stretch their legs and three in 10 said their worsening health is a result of being too busy to eat well.


The study was commissioned by Philips LED lighting to examine the effects desk working, whether at the office or working from home, has on the nation’s health.


More than a third are concerned the long-term impact their job might be having on their health, which is no wonder when 87 per cent suffer some form of ache or pain due to their job.


Dr Hilary Jones, said: “Many people spend at least six hours a day looking at screens either on their mobiles, looking at the television or working on computers.


“The normal blink rate is 10 to 15 times per minute, but this is 60 per cent reduced when looking at computer screens and the most common of all eye disorders is dry eye syndrome which is very much on the increase.”


The research found UK professionals typically spend an hour and 28 minutes at their screen before taking a break.


And of the more extensive periods of computer time, desk workers will go as long as two and a half hours before stepping away from their screen.


When they finally take time away from a monitor, breaks will last less than 10 minutes on average.


It comes as no surprise two-thirds feel better for taking regular breaks from their computer or laptop.


After spending a total of 11 hours a day staring at computer, mobile phone and TV screens, half of hard-working Brits suffer from eye strain.


Additionally, two thirds find they get headaches and migraines because of their working day, suffering from at least two a week.


Forty-six per cent put their back pain down to their working life, with more than a third suffering from dry eyes or neck-related aches.


After spending nearly three hours a week in agony, more than half agreed their aches and pains worsen throughout the course of a working week.


Yet just 18 per cent have seen a doctor over health concerns stemming from working life.


Two-thirds have made an attempt to improve their health in their workplace by doing things such as reducing screen time, implementing desk exercises or have even taken time off work.


And nearly one-fifth have adjusted their lighting setup to ease any potential strain on their eyes.


Dr Hilary Jones added: “There are things you can do to help make you comfortable while desk-working for long periods of time and prevent aches and pains.


“Glare can cause discomfort, flickering lights are tiresome, annoying and can have serious effect on people with photosensitive epilepsy.


“If you’re working from home a lot, installing quality LEDs can provide a nice warm light and have advantages including improved eye comfort.”


Elina Enqvist-Twomey, Philips LED Product Manager, said: “Screens with their artificial light are dominating our lives.


“Our priority is to ensure we produce quality energy-efficient LED lamps and luminaires that not only reduce environmental impact but make people more safe, productive and comfortable in their own home.


“Signify scientists have developed industry-leading LEDs with Eye Comfort criteria which ensures lights meet lighting standards that have been tested to be comfortable for your eyes.”