Laptops: Are they a Convenience or a Hazard?
The laptops are convenient to carry anywhere. When these were first introduced, they were quite expensive and were used by business community, who could work away from office, for example: while travelling on planes or trains and at home. As per study, in 2005 Laptops outsold the desktop computers.
The popularity of laptops has been increasing day-by-day, due to low pricing and advanced technology. These are easy to carry. Apart from the business community, students also find it a necessity. With wireless internet access, there has been increase usage of laptops among teleworkers, working from other locations, using home as a base or working from home.
The advantages of laptops are many. Usage of laptop facilitates to work more flexibly and be more mobile. The advantages also go with disadvantages like work-related back, neck and shoulder problem. The load through your spine is much greater and, even worse, it’s a static load. You do not have movements and hence this causes neck, upper back and arm problems.
Continuous usage of laptops can lead to Upper Limb Disorders (ULDs), which is also known as Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI).
You need to have good health for correct laptop health. While working on your laptop, you need to be safer and more comfortable. The following steps may be useful:
- Place your laptop on a stable base, where there is support for your arms and not on your lap
- Use with a separate keyboard and mouse, for sustained period of work. It is advisable to do so, as the laptop keyboard is attached to the screen. This will enable you to put the laptop on a stand and the screen opened at eye level.
- Adopt good posture. The way laptops are designed, for convenience, you may neglect the correct sitting posture. Sit straight with your lower back supported and ensure that other desk equipment is within reach.
- Take regular breaks. It will relieve you of upper body tension.