If you are pregnant and work in an office, there are several changes you should make to your office space to reduce pain and complications. If you occasionally work from home, you may find that you spend more days in your home office as your pregnancy progresses. For that reason, it is important to make sure that your home office can support your work style while you are pregnant. Below are some changes you should consider making to your home office for a more comfortable pregnancy.
Invest In a Footstool
As your pregnancy progresses, you may experience swelling in your extremities known as edema. Edema can be made worse if you sit or stand for a long period of time, so it is important to change your position often and take breaks when possible. However, if you find yourself sitting at your desk for the majority of the day, investing in a footrest to elevate your feet can help reduce swelling.
You can choose a simple footrest, such as an ottoman, and simply turn your chair away from your desk to put your feet up. This can be done when you are on calls and do not need to use your computer. Alternatively, you can consider a footrest that attaches beneath your desk. These do not elevate your legs as much as an ottoman, but they will provide some relief throughout the day.
Consider an Exercise Ball or Active Chair
Using an exercise ball as a chair allows you to throw in a few pelvic tilts throughout the day to help prepare your body for childbirth and promotes stretching when you experience lower back pain or stress. They also allow you to sit with your legs spread, to accommodate your growing bump more easily. Exercise balls or active chairs can also help support correct posture and alignment if they are used correctly. This means that you should concentrate on sitting up straight instead of slouching while you are in the chair. If you find that you slouch while you are using an exercise ball or active chair, then you should consider returning to a chair with back support.
Add Adequate Lumbar Support for Your Back
If you are continuing to use a traditional office chair, make sure that it has adequate lumbar support. This is because as your bump grows, your spine will curve more, creating a greater gap between your back and the chair. You can purchase lumbar rolls that can be added to the back of your chair to support your lower back. Alternatively, you can invest in an office chair with adjustable lumbar support to fit you as your body changes.
Adjust the Height of Your Desk and Monitor as Your Pregnancy Progresses
Throughout your pregnancy, your extra weight can change your balance and adjust your posture. For this reason, it is important to adjust the height of your desk or chair and monitors regularly. You should make sure that your monitors remain eye-level throughout your pregnancy and that your hands are at a comfortable, supported angle.
Consider Armrests That Extend From Your Desk to Prevent Carpal Tunnel
Pregnant women are at a higher risk for carpal tunnel syndrome due to swelling in the hands and forearms. Additionally, as your bump grows, you may need to move further back from your desk, losing some of the support your forearms once had. To help prevent carpal tunnel, you should consider investing in arm extensions for your desk. These attach to the front of your desk and support the weight of your arms while you type.
Working from home can make your pregnancy easier, but it is important to make appropriate adjustments to your home office if you will be using it regularly. Visit an office furniture showroom to see what pieces you can add to make your pregnancy easier.