Working during pregnancy may have some challenges. It can be difficult to stay safe and comfortable at the workplace, manage your pregnancy symptoms all while tackling your work schedule and duties. Lots of women work long hours at physically demanding jobs. Others may be very sedentary, working at a desk looking at a computer screen for most of the day. Here are some tips to help make your day safer and easier.
If you work on a computer or sit at a desk for most of the day, comfort is key. To avoid wrist and hand discomforts, neck and shoulder pains, backaches and eye strains, follow these tips:
• Take short breaks often and walk around your office or building.
• Adjust your chair, keyboard and other office equipment to be more comfortable.
• Use a small pillow or cushion for lower back support.
• Keep your feet elevated by using a footrest.
• Be sure to use the correct hand and arm positions for typing.
• Use a non-reflective glass screen cover on your computer monitor.
• Adjust the computer monitor for brightness and contrast to a setting that is comfortable for your eyes.
If you need to lift something, follow these tips:
• Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.
• Bend at your knees, but keep your back straight and rear end tucked in.
• Use your arms and legs. Lift with your arms (not back) and push up with your legs.
• When possible, lower the weight of the item (for example, break up the contents of one box into two or three smaller boxes).
Standing for long periods of time can also be cause for concern. That’s because blood can collect in your legs, which may lead to dizziness, fatigue and back pain. When standing:
• Place one foot on a small foot rest or box.
• Switch feet on the foot rest often throughout the day.
• Wear comfortable shoes.
It’s important that the work environment around you is safe for you and baby. If you have concerns, speak with your health care provider and your supervisor at work.
Learn more ways to stay safe at work.
Have questions? Email us at AskUs@marchofdimes.org.
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