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Factors to consider for workplace fatigue

19 September 2023

Factors outside and inside the workplace might contribute to workplace tiredness. Today's American workplaces unfortunately have a very high prevalence of work-related weariness, especially among those who work nights or have unpredictable schedules. If not effectively handled, chronic job weariness can have negative effects on an employee's physical, emotional, and mental health over time.

While it may be simple to brush off office exhaustion at first, it might result in more serious issues like reduced functioning and long-term health issues. Admitting to being overworked can be difficult for some workers, frequently because of a competitive workplace environment or worrying about progressing at work.

Employers may also play a part in fostering these anxieties by occasionally requiring workers to put in extra time. However, occupational weariness is a safety issue that needs to be recognized and handled appropriately. The following are some common risk factors linked to workplace weariness that both employers and employees should be aware of:

Hurried or psychologically taxing job

Irregular shift patterns or back-to-back overnight shifts

More than 50 hours on average per week

Poor sleep hygiene

Tedious, repetitive, and boring job

Physically taxing employment

Prolonged commute

Difficulties with one's own health

Little to no time for breaks

Stressful and noisy workplaces

Dim or very bright lighting

What Are Symptoms Of Workplace Fatigue?

Workplace fatigue symptoms might appear at any time during an employee's employment, although they aren't usually obvious to others. Workplace weariness might go unnoticed until an individual starts having serious health issues or quits because of burnout. Early detection of workplace weariness is crucial for employee health in general as well as for staff retention.

The symptoms of workplace exhaustion can be minor to severe, sporadic to persistent, and hardly discernible to quite obvious. They may become apparent as a direct result of aspects of the office environment, or they may be brought on by less obvious causes, including difficulty sleeping or a personal health issue. It's crucial to keep in mind, though, that stress at work frequently has an impact on many facets of daily life.

The signs of weariness can be easily identified in both your work surroundings and others' with a keen eye. You can start managing work exhaustion symptoms as soon as you can identify them.

Ergonomic Solutions for Workplace Fatigue

You are likely already aware of the benefits of ergonomic devices for lowering your risk of MSDs including repetitive stress injuries. The best ergonomic goods are made with fatigue reduction as one of their main design goals. Your productivity diminishes and you may be more prone to errors when you're tired. This is bad for both you and your employer. Online retailers provide ergonomic solutions that might help you maintain a constant level of energy throughout the day.

Here are some pointers for using ergonomic accessories to lessen tiredness.

Keep Moving

Avoid remaining in the same position or posture for a long time. Every hour or so, spend a few minutes standing up, moving around, or performing some gentle stretches. Think about alternating between working while sitting and standing during the day. You might want to think about utilizing a sit-stand desk if you stand while working.

The Active Standing Desk Mat

The anti-fatigue mat has a curved surface designed to promote stretching and movement while standing. You can immediately feel the superb cushioning provided by this active anti-fatigue mat. You may extend your calves, lift both feet, and stand with a better posture thanks to its sloped design.

Keep Your Neck Straight

Maintain a straight neck and head posture. Check your monitor's position first. The screen should be exactly at your eye level to prevent neck and eye strain. Your neck and shoulders should be in a relaxed, neutral position whether you are standing or sitting down. If you utilize many monitors, make sure you can readily see them without turning your head.

Rest Your Eyes

Try to blink more often. Follow the 20-20-20 rule and close your eyes occasionally for a few seconds to get some rest. Also, you can adjust the display settings on your computer to prevent further eye damage and strain.

Even while the color scheme you choose may be attractive to the eye, it could not be good for your eyes. Your eyes may work harder than necessary if there is insufficient contrast. Don’t forget to lower the monitor's brightness.

Use Proper Lighting

Make sure the area where you work is properly lit. Too little or too much light can strain the eyes, resulting in neck pain, headaches, and impaired vision. Many studies have suggested that the level of brightness and the type of lights used in an office affect employee productivity.

Retain Desk Effectiveness

It is best to keep the keyboard and mouse close together to avoid reaching too far, which puts pressure on the arms and shoulders. The monitor's top should not be higher than eye level, and it should be positioned squarely in front of you. To avoid having to often turn your head and neck, the keyboard should be placed immediately in front of the monitor.

Do Not Slouch

Make sure that you are seated properly in the chair. Do not slouch! Sit such that the chair's back supports both your lower and upper back. This will allow the chair to help you maintain good posture. Your elbows should remain close to your body, and your shoulders, neck, and head should be relaxed. Your hands, wrists, and forearms ought to be in a straight line and parallel to the ground.

Place Your Chair Correctly

Squeeze in when working while seated. Keep your distance from the mouse and keyboard to a minimum. You'll become tired more quickly if you have to extend your arms to operate the mouse and keyboard. Set up your equipment and devices so that you can maintain a neutral elbow position while working.

Keep Your Feet on the Ground

Make sure that your seat is adjusted according to your height. When you are seated, your feet shouldn't be hanging loose. Use a footrest or adjust the keyboard and chair so that your feet can rest on the floor without discomfort or feeling force or weight on the backs of your legs.

Get Adequate Rest

The recommended sleep duration for the majority of people is between 7 and 9 hours per night. We are aware that getting extra sleep on a regular basis can be challenging, but finding a way to do so could be an important first step toward becoming more alert and productive at work.

Get Regular Exercise

Staying active is a great way of maintaining good health. Try to engage in an active workout routine every day to avoid stress and maintain good health.

Get Rest

When you need to, take a nap. Try to avoid going to work if you are sick, or work intermittently. You must obtain enough decent rest if you want to recover from illness more quickly. Lack of sleep or rest could make your symptoms worse, which would ultimately reduce your productivity.

Factors to Consider for Workplace Fatigue

We must examine the variables and situations that affect weariness if we are to understand it. Fatigue occurs in many different ways and places, and there are numerous ways to observe and analyze it.

The level of weariness is greatly influenced by exposure and the alternating of work and break times for all types. Similar to the quantity and the number of work hours worked. Sleepiness should be taken into account when keeping track of weariness because it has a detrimental impact on productivity metrics.

The frequency and duration of breaks are crucial, but the breaks that are deliberately taken by the employee have a greater impact on their recuperation. The changing of work content and task rotation are also beneficial.

When shifts are longer than eight hours, load accumulates, and with increasing levels of weariness, it becomes harder to maintain the same level of work requirements. After eight hours of labor, fatigue levels exponentially rise, but after ten hours, they cause productivity to decline.

Since the human body cannot sustain prolonged overexertion, several ailments and bodily issues will develop. To protect employee health, a maximum of five days and forty hours a week should be expected.

Frequently, questionnaire-style procedures are employed to measure physical burden. The Sleepiness Scales are combined in study with methodologies that are unique to work activities. These are tested scale-based techniques. Together, the two different strategies frequently produce results. Long-term exposure frequently results in a feeling of exhaustion, whereas routine is closely related to sleepiness.

Muscle contraction, the task's cycle duration, and the ratio of the first two are sometimes used to analyze physical tiredness. The goal is to define a type of toughness that may be used to determine the duration and degree of exposure that causes productivity to decline. Although it's crucial to understand that physical exhaustion tests have a clearly defined scope, typically concentrating on a particular area or body part using an EMG.

Final Thoughts

Each employee should be aware of the telltale signs of exhaustion so they can either recognize it in themselves or in a coworker. You can promote a secure, healthy, and effective workplace for your entire staff by recognizing weariness and taking proactive measures to address it before it turns into a long-term problem. FelxiSpot offers some of the top ergonomic solutions to manage fatigue at the workplace.