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Health Hazards Of Laptop

By Dr. Rachna Pande

Laptop computers have become very popular world over  due to the ease in carrying and using  them.  But now with more and   more people using it, over time  health hazards are also being identified.

Laptops with wifi are the in-thing today. They  generate  electromagnetic radiation more than ordinary laptops.  This increases warmth over the groins, when held over the lap. Therefore it can  cause sexual impotence if  put  on the lap for a long time. Most of the youngsters  put it on their laps while doing any work or watching movies. This may be for more than an hour or 2 hours continuously. The heat generated over the scrotal region   tends  to reduce sperm production resulting in male infertility. Some people tend to put a cushion  between lap and laptop but this strategy is not useful. The laptop fan starts working due to the overheating caused by the cushion, generating hot air.  This  will generate more heat over the lap though indirectly.

The continuous  movement  of fingers and hands over the keyboard can lead to painful  cramps in the fingers and hands and even induce arthritis.  Carpal tunnel syndrome can be induced due to continuous hand movements,  where the median nerve gets entrapped at the wrist leading to  severe burning pain in hands and fingers.

Since one would often bend the neck or stretch it out for using a laptop, neck is strained causing pain. Backache can be precipitated or augmented by bending or turning of back while working on laptops.  In middle aged or elderly persons, cervical and lumber  spondylosis is precipitated and aggravated.

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Eyes are subjected to strain  with laptops as much as with desktops.  Looking at a  computer screen for long time, strains the eyes causing eye pain and chronic unexplained headache.  Power of accommodation of eyes  is impaired resulting in deranged far vision.

These hazards can be avoided and one can remain healthy while using laptops. One should try to put the laptop on an even  surface if it has to be used for a long time. The surface should be ideally  at such a level   that the neck is not bent or strained while working. The back should be kept straight and supported if possible.

Adjustment of posture should   be such that the fingers and hands remain supported below or do not have to reach far while working.  Regular exercise of the wrists, hands and neck helps to maintain their flexibility and prevents painful cramps. The screen should not be too bright and there should be no glare of light falling over it. Illumination of the room or working space should be sufficient to avoid strain on the eyes.

One should try to  take  a pause  for at least 15-30 minutes after working on laptop computer for about 1 to 2 hours. During this pause eyes can be closed and covered with both hands to provide relaxation. There are specific exercises of eye muscles. These when  done regularly help to strengthen the eye muscles and keep eyes healthy.  If possible, an individual can also go out and look far in open space to maintain the far looking power of the eye. Youngsters should be encouraged to play outdoor group games instead of being on laptops for long hours.

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A correct diet is important in   avoiding health hazards of computers.  A balanced diet including  fresh vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts, healthy milk products  and fish, can keep eyes and bones healthy. Thus eye problems and joints pain can be avoided or minimized.

Dr. Rachna Pande

Specialist internal medicine


  • SOURCE: OoReporters


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Updated: April 15, 2019 — 9:12 am

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