That desk job of yours is probably more dangerous than you think it is. Plenty of things you do every day in the workplace are slowly chipping away at you. From the printer to your keyboard, the dangers presented in an office can have real effects on your physical well-being, just as mental strains can hurt you in the long-term.
1. Sitting at your desk all day
Sitting for lengthy periods is terrible for your body. Aches and pains are the least of your problems -- it can lead to an early death. You're at a higher risk of muscular skeletal disorders, obesity, diabetes, cancer, heart disease and more, even if you work out regularly.
2. Bad air quality in your building
The air inside a building can be up to 100 times dirtier than outside, and you're exposed to a variety of unhealthy gases and chemicals. There are pollutants in the air conditioning, toxic particles, dangerous bacteria and mold all flying around, especially in buildings that aren't well taken care of.
3. Over-exposure to printers and photocopiers
Photocopiers are a source of potentially deadly ozone if the filter isn't periodically changed, and even small amounts can cause chest pain and irritation. Laser printers do too, along with toner particles that can get in your lungs and blood stream, which could lead to lung disease and other ailments.
4. Working for over 10 hours per day
European researchers found that people who work 11 hours or more every day have a 60% greater risk of a multitude of cardiovascular problems, including heart attack and angina.
5. Endlessly staring at a computer screen
Even though computer screens don't give off radiation, the strain from staring over long periods of time can cause harm to your vision. Beyond that, you can also experience headaches and migraines.
6. Dirty keyboards
Keyboards can be a breeding ground for bacteria if not kept clean. Microbiologists found that keyboards can even have up to five times as many bacteria as a bathroom, and can include dangerous ones like e.Coli and coliforms -- both commonly associated with food poisoning -- along with staphylococcus, which causes a range of infections.
7. Typing too much
Excessive amounts of typing is a well-known cause of carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS), which is a painful wrist strain that can go up your arm. CTS can get bad enough to cause permanent nerve damage and muscle wasting.
8. Smartphone overuse
People who use their smartphones heavily to text and email are prone to muscle fatigue which is a type of RSI. The effects can get so bad that the pain can reach all the way up to your wrist and can be utterly debilitating to your hands.
9. Eating fast food for lunch
Most office-folk go out for an unhealthy lunch once in a while -- some more than others, but even the occasional indulgence has its negative effects. A portion of fast food usually has around double the calories to another similar food of the same size, and they have a lot of oxidized fat, which increases the risk of heart disease.
10. Tight deadlines
You get stressed out when you have to meet a strict deadline, which can affect your learning and memory according to Science Daily. This sort of short-term stress can be just as bad as stress that lasts weeks or months.
11. Being really, really bored
Boredom can actually shorten your life, according to researchers. A study from University College London showed that those who complain of boredom are more likely to die young, and those who report high levels of tedium are much more likely to die from heart disease or stroke. It also puts you at higher risk for workplace accidents.