Best Practices and Tips from Physical Therapists in East Brunswick
As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, many of us have been working from home and dealing with the benefits, complications, and everything that comes along with it. Achieving work-life balance has been difficult, our dining rooms have converted into offices and the workdays have begun to blur together with weekends.
While there are some upsides to working from home, the East Brunswick community and Americans at large are struggling to cope with the new normal. Between keeping up with work, caring for children, and cooking yet another quarantine meal, daily routines feel like a balancing act. The physical therapists at ProFysio have made necessary changes to their work routines, including working from home and providing TeleHealth sessions for patients who feel more comfortable receiving treatments that way. ProFysio remains open and continues to serve patients in-person, but TeleHealth has been an extremely valuable tool in providing top-quality care to all of our patients.
The influx of TeleHealth appointments has required our team to be more creative and innovative in our methods of providing treatment. The ability to rehabilitate at home has added to the convenience of our therapies, as patients can be treated not only when they are in East Brunswick, but wherever they may be. In an effort to remotely deliver top quality physical treatments, our team has created functional workspaces that enable us to demonstrate therapeutic exercise the same way we would at our clinic. We have seen success in doing so and would like to share what has worked for us in an attempt to alleviate some stress for employees who find themselves in similar situations. After all, stress is a major contributor to body aches and pains, as backed by The American Institute of Stress.
The following work-from-home tips are based on our trials and tribulations as well as conversations with our patients about what has worked for them:
- Schedule your work hours and set limits.
Have a conversation with your friends, families, and/or roommates to make them aware of what hours you are setting aside for work time. This will help you minimize distractions, improve productivity, and decrease stress levels in the process. Limit interruptions within your household and create boundaries to make sure that neither your work life nor your personal life is neglected.
- Stick to your routine and get good quality sleep.
One simple but helpful trick is to set alarms to wake up at the same time every day. Even if you are creating your own schedule, your body still thrives on routine and maintaining a normal sleep schedule is a key component of this. Eating healthy meals throughout the day rather than unhealthy snacking will also help you establish a positive mindset. We also recommend avoiding habits like drinking caffeine or alcohol late in the day, taking long naps, and sleeping in uncomfortable positions on a mattress not ideal for your body. If you are experiencing sleeping disruptions due to body pains, our physical therapist at ProFysio can help evaluate your current sleeping arrangements and patterns to help you achieve restful sleep.
- Exercise daily.
It's tempting to work all day and then binge-watch your favorite television series, especially when we have been urged to stay away from public places like gyms. Exercising in a safe way for at least 30 minutes per day will help you reduce stress and maintain healthy hormone levels. However, we do not recommend beginning a new, strenuous exercise routine in the midst of a pandemic. Stick to exercises you are familiar with and if you are unsure of the best ways to practice a safe routine or have underlying conditions that prevent you from doing so, contact our office and we will be happy to assist you.
- Prepare your workspace.
Most offices prepare their workspaces with all the necessary equipment, and our makeshift work-from-home spaces usually don’t compare. While our home offices will likely never have all of these amenities, we have found success in creating workspaces that reduce stress on the neck and back. Utilizing an external keyboard and mouse allows you to raise your monitor to the proper visual height to prevent neck, back, and wrist issues. You will also benefit from finding a comfortable chair and perhaps a pillow to promote lumbar support.
- Take breaks.
Don’t fall victim to logging hours of screen time without taking breaks. Long periods spent staring at screens can take a toll on your mental and physical health. Utilize the 20:20:20 rule as a way to remember to take frequent breaks. It works by setting an alarm for every 20 minutes and taking a 20-second break by looking at an object 20 feet away. This change in scenery will give your eyes a rest, improve blood flow in the body as you get out of your chair, and reduce the stress on your neck, back, and shoulders.
- Use technology to your advantage.
Utilize our TeleHealth services to reach your physical therapists and medical professionals and address your concerns about any acute or chronic issues. We provide personalized recommendations that will help you achieve comfort throughout your work day, whatever that may look like. Outside of work priorities, we also recommend utilizing video calls and telephone calls to keep in touch with the people who are important to you. Although close physical contact is not advisable at this point in time, we can all do our best to reach out, share our experiences, and create a healthier transition for everyone.
If you need assistance navigating exercise, wellness or managing your home office set up, contact ProFysio in East Brunswick at (732) 812-5200 or contact us online to learn more about our in-office and TeleHealth appointments.