Mental Health

Has Your Office Turned Into a Health Hazard?

Office Health Hazards

Work is something everyone has to do eventually. Whether we’re on a construction site operating heavy machinery or sitting in an office typing away on a keyboard, it’s important to put our health and safety as a priority instead of our work. However, offices can be extremely busy, loud and very stressful places to work in.

As a result, they can quickly turn from a peaceful and quiet atmosphere into a dangerous health hazard full of hidden surprises that can catch us off guard and make us hate our work. Not only that, but your health could be at risk if your employer or your fellow co-workers are neglecting basic safety procedures. Want to know if your health is at risk in your office? Then here are a couple of things to look out for.


Stress can be a killer and it’s overtaking back pains and strain injuries as the most problematic health issue in an office. Stress is caused by a number of things, but it’s mainly due to overworked employees and aggressive co-workers. If you feel stressed at work more often than not, then you may need to rethink the career choice you’ve picked or try to avoid stressful encounters as much as you can at work. If it’s getting really bad, then you may want to speak to either your employer, the HR department or even a lawyer.

Structural Hazards

From weak cables to loose ceiling panels and uneven floors, old offices can be incredibly dangerous especially if they were constructed before the millennium. Many office buildings still contain traces of asbestos, a material that was widely used in construction in the past. It was hailed as a miracle fibre, but it was quickly removed due to the risk of cancer it came with when inhaling the fibres. If you are concerned about the structural safety of your office and the presence of asbestos, or if you are suffering from the symptoms (shortness of breath, chest pains and appetite loss) then you need to get professional help immediately.

Computer Emissions

In addition to eye strain from using a computer for long periods of time, some badly maintained computers can actually give off toxic fumes which irritate the skin and even cause headaches. It’s a good idea to update your office computers so that their parts and cleaned and clear of dust and mites, and to also let your eyes rest between long sessions at the desk.

Bad Furnishing

Back pains are one of the leading causes of health issues in the office. They are mainly caused by bad posture, but that can be fixed with the help of a good-quality office chair. Although expensive, these chairs are essential to the well-being of the staff that work in an office, and it’s a worthwhile investment to any business that takes its health and safety seriously. A good chair will mean your employees can relax their body when they work, reducing the chance of injury and making them more productive.

Would you like to receive similar articles by email?

Dr. Jade Marie Tomaszewski is a pathologist-in-training at McGill University, where she also did her degree in MSc Pathology. She obtained her medical degree (MD) from the University of the Philippines, after completing a BSc in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology. In her (little) spare time, she enjoys spending time with family, curling up with a book and a large mug of tea, and trying out new recipes in the kitchen. You can follow her on LinkedIn and Twitter.

Leave a Reply

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