The threat of getting fatal blood clots from being a frequent, long-duration flier is known but not the threat from sitting at the office desk.
A study conducted by the Medical Research Institute of New Zealand in Wellington shows those who sit at their office desks for a long time are at just as much of a risk for deep vein thrombosis (DVT). Ergonomic office chairs and body conscious actions can however limit exposure.
In DVT, blood clots are created in a deep vein. They can, at first, block blood flow leading to pain, hypertension and other issues, but the real threat is when the clot moves. If it travels to the lungs, heart or brain it can be fatal if not caught and treated with blood thinning drugs.
The study subjects were 62 people who suffered from DVT. While many have long thought the main risk was long distance travel, only 21% of the patients had recently been on long-distance flights, while 34% of the subjects had reported being seated at desks for long periods in the days leading up to their hospitalization.
According to doctors, many office workers do not consider how long they are sitting in the same position in front of their computer. Many did not even have adjustable office chairs.
When office workers were asked about their workday, they realized they spent the majority of their eight-hour day in one place, only getting up two to three times. To compound this, many then go home and spend more time in front of their home computer, sitting in an identical position.
Symptoms differ by person. Usually there is swelling or pain in the legs. It is possible it will only show up in one leg, and only when standing or trying to walk. Sometimes this is accompanied by discoloured or red skin in the affected leg.
Those who are most at risk for DVT are those who are over 60 years of age, are overweight, or have a family history of DVT. Certain medical histories also increase the chances for DVT - those with a prior surgery or injury that cuts down the blood flow to some parts of their body, those who have cancer, whose taking hormone therapy or birth control pulls, or those with varicose veins.
The ideal prevention for DVT is exercise and a suitable ergonomic office chair to limit pressure. Getting up from the desk and taking a brisk walk around the office regularly would limit it. It does not have to be a long walk, but do it at a brisk pace to get the blood flowing and moving in those sedate limbs. While not at desk, periodically exercising or massaging the muscles in the legs helps.
An ergonomic office chair with at least a three lever setting has to be ensured. Periodically adjusting these settings can reduce pressure on over weighted sections of the body. The key to an ergonomic office chair is in constant adjustment. Ergonomic office chairs are not just a set and leave solution rather they are a continual arrangement of ensured physical support. Ergonomic office chairs are available from H and L Office Furniture.
Dehydration can also lead to DVT, a lot of water has to be drunk. If enough water is drunk it will have the positive side effect of making the need to use the restroom every few hours, a reminder to take that brisk walk. An aspirin or purple grape juice can also decrease the chances of blood clotting in the veins. Caffeine and nicotine increase the chances of blood clots.