1. Hips, Back and Neck Pain
Credits: Comprehensive Spine Institute
Prolonged sitting can lead to hips, back and neck pain. Sitting for too long causes your hip muscles to stiffen, which can lead to issue with your hip-joints. Excessive sitting can also cause problems with your neck and back, especially if you are not sitting correctly or you don’t use an ergonomic chair or desk station.
2. Muscle Degeneration
Credits: Wellbeing Health
If you are sitting all day, you are not allowing your lower body muscles to hold you up. You need these muscles for stability and regular walking. Excessive sitting will lead to muscle atrophy, which is the degeneration or weakening of your muscles. Once your leg and glute muscles deteriorate, your body is at a higher risk of injury.
3. Weight Gain
Credits: Ultra Care Pro
By sitting too long, your body cannot digest the fats and sugars in your body as efficiently as compared to moving your body and muscles once in a while.
Your body requires movement after you eat to digest your fats and sugars effectively. By sitting too long, your digestion process slows down, which leads to the possible retain of those fats and sugars in your body. Some people may experiencemetabolic syndrome - described as central obesity (waist circumference) which results in increased blood pressure and cholesterol.
Research revealed that there is a positive association between sedentary behaviour and type 2 diabetes. It is reported that people who spend more time sitting have a112% higher risk of diabetes.
5. Heart Disease
Increases in sedentary behaviour have been associated with increased blood pressure among children, teenagers and adults.Studies show that people who sit for 10 hours or more a day had a 18% likelihood of having a heart attack or stroke than those who sit five or fewer hours everyday.
A new study discovered that excessive sitting at workincreases your risk of bowel cancer by 44%. Many research further reveals that sedentary behaviour or prolonged sitting may lead to different types of cancer, includinglung,colon anduterine cancers.
7. Varicose veins
Sitting for long hours can cause pain and swelling in the legs. Many people can developvaricose veins, which is when the blood begins to pool in your legs. This will lead to possibly blood clots, resulting in serious issues such as deep vein thrombosis.
8. Deep vein thrombosis
Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) isthe formation of a blood clot in a vein deep in the body. It is said that this blood clot can travel to the heart and lungs, cutting off blood flow to other parts of the body. This can further cause shortness of breath, chest pain and even death.
9. Mental Health
There is a link between sitting and mental health which are found in new studies. People who spend75% of their leisure time seated are more likely to experience symptoms of anxiety and depression, compared to people with a less sedentary lifestyle.
Studies have shown that there is astrong link between long periods of sitting and higher risk of death from all causes. It is evident people with excessive sitting suffer from many diseases as previously discussed, leading to an increased death rate.
How can you minimise the risks from prolonged sitting?
Improve your sitting posture
By adopting proper sitting posture, you can avoid neck, back and seat pain. Monitor your bad sitting habits and correct them. Ask your colleagues or someone near you to help you in correcting your sitting posture.
You can read more about your correct sitting posture here.
Do stretches (and take mini breaks!)
Stretching is a vital part of healthy office life. Be sure to stretch when you take your breaks to save your spine. Here are some tips for stretching in an office:
Invest in a sit-stand desk
The popularity of an adjustable sit-stand desk is the result of the increasing concerns over prolonged sitting at work. You can invest in an adjustable sit-stand desk just so you can alternate between sitting and standing up. This can help you be more active and minimise the associated risks of excessive sitting.
Invest in an ergonomic chair
Last but not the least, invest in an ergonomic chair. If you work more than 8 hours per day and 38 hours per week in an administrative or clerical role, it is essential to facilitate your long hours of sitting with a high quality ergonomically designed office chair. You can improve your sitting posture and increase your productivity in the long run at the same time.
Our favourites are:
- Prolonged sitting is detrimental to both your physical and mental health.
- You can start minimising the associated health risks by taking breaks, doing stretches, and investing in a proper ergonomically designed chair and workstation.
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