It’s another semester of “Zoom University” from the comfort of your cozy room. You can watch lectures in bed, easily access snacks and even stay in pajamas all day. These aspects of life are great, with one exception: the wide range of bodily pains that come along with the sedentary lifestyle online school has given us. From back pain to eye strain, each bodily ailment is unique and unfortunate in its own way. So we at the Clog have taken the liberty of power ranking some of these pains from least to most painful.
Do you ever sit for so long that your butt just completely numbs itself into oblivion? Or perhaps your sit bones start taking issue with the chair you’re sitting on. Either way, the result is maximum discomfort. Fortunately, this is no problem that a quick butt wiggle or stretch won’t fix. Better yet, get up and walk around the house — it’d serve as a nice break from your sedentary life anyway.
For all the mouse-users out there, this one’s for you. All the time spent with your hands propped up and against a hard surface leaves your achy wrists desperate for sweet relief. This one is also not too terrible, though, because one can simply skip the mouse. Or invest in some gel padding for your mouse and keyboard.
Ah, back pain. Here we have another lovely consequence of 24/7 poor, seated posture. Our upper backs hurt from hunching over. Our lower backs suffer from keeping our bodies upright. There always seems to be a dull ache in our backs, whether it’s when you wake up in the morning or stand up after a long time at your desk. One could argue this is worse than the sharpness of neck pain, but back pain’s dull and ever-present nature enables us to easily identify the discomfort and employ solutions — stretching and yoga, for example.
You’re nearing the end of the day, intensely working on that computer science project that’s due at midnight, before you realize how horrible your posture is. Sitting slouched in your chair, head fixed at an angle down toward your laptop, you sit up and turn your neck. A painful crack ensues, releasing all the built-up tension from the day — honestly, from the past few months — and you groan. Sporadic movement-induced neck pain constantly reminds us of how fixed our heads are all the time. Luckily, with a few neck rolls throughout the day, it’s somewhat easy to fix.
If there’s one thing I spend more time staring at than anything, it’s my laptop screen. Not to mention my phone and TV screens. Our eyes work from morning to night, processing all the information coming from our screens. And by the fourth or fifth hour in a row, our eyes are strained and crying for sweet relief — well, if your eyes haven’t completely dried out by then. The nature of our current lives, however, leaves us with no choice but to continue torturing our poor eyes. While this isn’t quite as traumatizing as heart pain, there are still plenty of potential health consequences.
Most of us haven’t been able to see or interact with loved ones in person, and it has definitely taken its toll. From heartbreak to heartache, it’s been a rough time, to say the least. Sometimes I’ll even catch myself missing people so much it feels like my heart will explode. While this is more of an emotional pain, it still physically manifests in your chest. A painful, yet beautiful reminder to appreciate the good times with your favorite people, heartache definitely tops this list.
If your body feels worn, weathered and tired, we feel you. It’s been a tough year even without all the achy and discomforting physical pains that come with quarantine life. You may feel like there’s no end to this string of bodily ailments, but do not fret. First, give thanks for all that your body has supported you through. Second, think of these pains as a reminder to take breaks and take care of yourself. After all, your body still needs to support you for many years to come.
Contact Kristie Lin at [email protected].