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Work From Home Pros And Cons To Overall Health

Work From Home Pros And Cons To Overall Health

The pandemic has forced us to stay inside our homes, prompting the rise of work from home setups. Apart from the obvious benefit of keeping your distance from people and places where you can get COVID-19, there have been other unexpected surprises. With the pandemic still not quite gone, remote work is here to stay for the foreseeable future. In fact, a survey showed that 91% of the participants preferred hybrid or remote work arrangements. This applies to both employees and management. In this article, we will look instead at whether or not this setup is good or bad for your health.

How do work from home setups benefit me?

These are just some of the benefits of a work from home arrangement:

  • Cost- and time-efficient: There is no need to travel, thereby reducing gas and parking fees, or commuting costs. Because you don’t need to travel, you get more time with your family and for other activities.
  • Greater productivity: A study found that participants had more concentration without office distractions.
  • More effort in trust, collaboration, and interactions among workers: Because the office setup takes away from chance discoveries about coworkers, the remote setup may compel you to share more about yourself purposely. The pandemic also changed the way people have had to communicate in order to work together through remote means.
  • Less work-related stress and tiredness: The freedom to work the way you want likely contributes to this lowered stress. Because you don’t need to wake up earlier to commute, you get more sleep.
  • Women can balance pregnancy and motherhood with work: In work from home setups, they don’t need to take leaves from work or share personal information with their boss. The same goes for those taking care of their elderly parents or relatives.

What are the drawbacks?

Despite the perks that this setup offers, it does come with its own disadvantages.

  • Back, neck, spine pain due to hours of sitting: People have created DIY workstations, but these pieces of furniture, particularly the chairs, are not really made for work from home. Ideally, your workstation should be one where you can straighten your back with your feet flat on the floor. Your hips, knees, and elbows should be at a 90-degree angle. Moving around every so often to stand and stretch also helps you avoid body pain.
  • Weight gain: This is caused in part by lack of physical activity and eating more junk food, which potentially results in a host of more serious ailments. Diabetes is one example.
  • Mental health: studies show an uptick in anxiety, depression, and drug abuse. Due to isolation from others. The line between work hours and personal time is blurred now that the home is turned into a place of work as well. At the same time, the shift to digital spaces does open up more avenues for mental health services.

Key Takeaway

As we said earlier, remote work affected a radical change in the way we live today. Especially because we don’t know how long before the pandemic ends, work from home will continue to be the new normal. But like with everything else, it has its own positives and negatives. The ability to stay home allows us to spend more time with our families, save time and money and become more productive at our work. On the other side of the coin, prolonged periods of time at home promote a sedentary lifestyle, which could result in serious illnesses. Other times, it takes a toll on your mental health. Those of us who are remote employees do the best we can to strike a balance amid the pandemic. Your goal should be establishing a routine that incorporates healthy activities.

Learn more about General Health here.

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Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

The pros and cons of working remotely, https://fortune.com/2021/04/17/remote-work-home-hybrid-model-future/. Accessed 31 Mar 2022

Most Filipinos want a hybrid or remote workplace — HR study, https://www.bworldonline.com/most-filipinos-want-a-hybrid-or-remote-workplace-hr-study/. Accessed 31 Mar 2022

#YearofCOVID: Is Working From Home Bad For Your Health?, https://www.cedars-sinai.org/newsroom/yearofcovid-is-working-from-home-bad-for-your-health/. Accessed 31 Mar 2022

Healthier at Home, https://www.psychologicalscience.org/observer/remote-benefits. Accessed 31 Mar 2022

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Written by China Logarta Updated a week ago
Medically reviewed by Dexter Macalintal, MD