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Are you a data entry operator? Are you aware of the work-related health risks you face? The Occupational Safety and Health Administration says working on computers every day poses several health concerns to admin workers in California and elsewhere. You can avoid permanent health damage if you learn more about the hazards and how to mitigate them.

Computers are valuable tools in any business and even at home. However, improper or prolonged computer use can harm your musculoskeletal health, your eyes and more.

Biological Hazards

Have you ever thought of disinfecting the keyboard and mouse you use at work? Here is why you should do it regularly:

  • According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, computer equipment caused a 2007 outbreak of norovirus that affected more than 100 office workers.
  • The CDC says over 400 germs, including cold, flu and norovirus, can live in your keyboard at a time.

That makes your keyboard a more significant risk than a toilet seat. Disinfectant sprays can eliminate the threat.

Eye damage hazard

This is the most significant concern for the following reasons:

  • Extended hours of looking at the screen of a computer can cause double or blurred vision, burning or tearing eyes, fatigue, and headaches. You could become a candidate for prescription eyeglasses.
  • The CDC says extended hours of computer work can cause glaucoma, and you could even develop cataracts due to electromagnetic emissions.

Poor lighting in the office can exacerbate the risk of eye strain and headaches. Along with fatigue, you might develop work-related stress that could even cause missed workdays.

Emotional stress

In the days before we had computers, workers had diversity in their daily tasks. Health authorities say the internet and computers have changed the way we work, causing the following risks:

  • Standardized, consistent and repetitive tasks lead to emotional stress.
  • The CDC says statistics show a sizable increase in the numbers of reported work stress among date entry workers and administrative workers who spend most of their hours at work staring at a computer screen, doing mundane tasks repeatedly.

As a data entry clerk, your primary workload will put you at risk of work-related emotional stress.

Musculoskeletal problems

According to the CDC, the incidence rates for musculoskeletal problems are on a par with eye strain, which is 75% or more. Look out for the following:

  • Remaining seated in a fixed position for long periods can cause neck, shoulders and back pain and strain.
  • Repetitive hand movements can cause carpal tunnel syndrome, which causes numbness, tingling and burning in your wrists, hands and fingers.
  • Another consequence is tenosynovitis, which is inflammation of muscle sheaths enveloping the tendons on your fingers. It typically causes pain on the back of your hands and in your wrists.

If you continue working without wrist support, these disorders can spread to some of your other muscles, causing even more pain and weakness.

Your workers’ compensation rights

These conditions are all progressive, and because they develop over time, you might find it challenging to prove them being work-related. You can save yourself the added stress of fighting for compensation by utilizing the skills of an experienced California workers’ compensation attorney. It would help if you had legal counsel who knows the best doctors, has extensive experience in the navigation of benefits claims and knows how to prepare all the paperwork.

An attorney who knows how to fight for your rights, even if it means going to court, is the person you need in your corner to ensure you get maximum benefits under applicable laws.