While remote work has proven to be the safest way to work during the pandemic, it hasn’t been a pain-free experience.

Two in three Americans have experienced “tech fatigue” or physical pain as a result of working from home, according to a survey of 2,000 workers in the U.S. by online eyewear retailer GlassesUSA. About half the respondents said they had been working a hybrid schedule– half remotely and half at the office.

The top pain was eye strain (26 percent of the 2,000 respondents), while 15 percent cited headaches, 14 percent reported shoulder pain and 13 percent said they experienced leg aches.

Eye strain and headaches occurred seven times per month on average, while muscle and joint pain occurred nine times a month, the survey found.

This so-called tech fatigue comes as remote workers spend more time in front of screens. The U.K., Austria, Canada and the U.S. have added 2.5 hours to the average workday since the pandemic forced the global shift to remote work, Bloomberg News reported in February.

According to the GlassesUSA survey, the average American spends 27 hours a week in front of a screen. Among those polled, 63 percent said that their eyes had been bothering them and 45 percent believed their eyes were more sensitive as a result of remote work.

Relief from screen fatigue

“Because of increased screen time demands, it is important to take regular breaks from looking at screens, reduce focusing fatigue by looking out of the window or at an object 20 feet away for 20 seconds every 20 minutes,” optometrist Sandra Young said in the study. “It is also recommended to use blue light blocking glasses to help filter the harmful rays emitted from our digital devices.”

To help relieve eye strain, almost half (46 percent) of workers surveyed said they turn off their screens periodically throughout the day, with most doing so between 8 p.m. and midnight.

The pandemic has spurred some remote workers to rethink physical health, the survey said. Almost all of those polled said they have now taken charge of their health by drinking more water (56 percent) and napping more (75 percent). Seventy-seven percent said they feel a physical difference when water intake is low throughout the day.

Despite reports that remote workers have increased productivity since shifting to telecommuting and are finding greater work-life balance, many employees working from home want to return to the office, the report said.

Almost three-quarters (72 percent) percent of remote workers said going back to the office is the motivating factor needed to take better care of themselves. Since the pandemic-induced shift to remote work began, 57 percent of those polled said they gave up their exercise routines and carried stress throughout their day.

You Might Also Like:


Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *