Over past few months a new terminology zoom fatigue or zoom syndrome has emerged. Prompted by increased hours spent in front of the computer for work, social life, or even eating a dinner with grandparents. Zoom syndrome provoked by massive spike in videoconferencing over past few months so much that “Zooming” has replaced the verb videoconference.
First psychological article on zoom fatigue came out on February 23rd, 2021. This article describes the psychological perspective of zoom syndrome or zoom fatigue and has identified four contributing factors for zoom syndrome.
Causes for zoom fatigue and zoom syndrome
1. Close up eye contact
Face dimensions on the screen are unnatural compared to normal face-to-face meeting. During the zoom meeting everyone is looking at everyone all the time and even if you do not speak, you are being observed and treated as a speaker. That increases the required eye contact and adds the increased risk of eyestrain.
2. Constantly watching yourself on video call
Recent studies suggest that when you see a reflection of yourself, you are a lot more critical towards yourself. People can spend hours on zoom call watching themselves without even realizing it. Furthermore, scientists proved that there is a negative emotional impact on mental health to constantly seeing yourself.
3. Zoom calls decrease mobility
Audio calls allowed us to move around the office or the living room. However, when you are on zoom call you are restricted to the field view of the camera and that reduces the total movement practically to zero.
4. The mental load is much higher during the zoom or video call
Every person has his or her own mannerisms, face gestures and non-verbal communication methods. Face to face interacts allowed us to pick up and send settle cues, signals during the conversation. However, during the on-line meeting we have to work much harder to send or receive those cues.
Signs and Symptoms of “Zoom Syndrome”
- Neck pain with prolonged sited position
- Upper back or shoulder pain
- Low back pain
- Eye discomfort/ irritation
- Tension type headache
- TMJ pain (jaw pain)
- Physical fatigue
Those are some of the sign and symptoms you may experience with prolonged zooming or conference video calls.
What can you do to avoid zoom fatigue?
1. Avoid multitasking
It is very easy to fall into that trap, using an opportunity to do more in less period of time. But, studies show that doing multiple things at once will cut performance drastically. Different types of tasks require different types of brain regions to turn on and off. By constantly switching between tasks can reduce productivity by 40%.
2. Create routine for breaks
Some meetings can go on for hours at the time and there is no way you can walk away. There are some tricks that you can do. Minimize the screen and take the eyes away from the screen for few seconds, let your eyes rest. Repeat that few times an hour.
3. Reduce onscreen distractors
Studies suggest that constantly watching yourself in the little square on your computer can negatively impact your mental health. Furthermore, it can strain your eyes and cause variety of symptoms such as headaches, neck pain, eye pain and back pain. To minimize the risk, lower the screen with your picture or even hide it completely.
4. Exercise before and after the call
Quick exercise routine at home prior the zoom meeting can reduce muscle tension, blood pressure, anxiety and joint stiffness. Furthermore, at home exercise routine can improve the cognitive awareness so you are fully ready for the meeting.
5. Drink lots of water
Drinking water is vitally important for your health. Staying hydrated will help to reduce fatigue, increase energy, flush out toxins, and helps maintain blood pressure. Also, when you are hydrated you will require to go to the bathroom which, will provide you with much needed break for your back and neck.
Zoom fatigue and chiropractic treatment in Mississauga
GMG Health and Wellness Center in Mississauga can help and remove the symptoms of “Zoom Syndrome”. Chiropractic care in Mississauga can provide relief from the neck pain, shoulder pain, headaches, jaw pain and fatigue.
Treatment for Zoom Syndrome in Mississauga
- Muscle release therapy can reduce the tension in the muscle and provide pain relief.
- Spinal manipulation: a whole nervous system is connected to the spine. Chiropractic adjustment can increase range of motion, reduce inflammation, muscle soreness and release muscle tension.
- Acupuncture: dry needing can increase the blood flow, decrease pain, accelerate healing and remove inflammation.
- Ergonomic assessment of workspace: Chiropractors at GMG health and wellness in Mississauga can provide in depth consultation on your ergonomic safety of the workspace.
- Home exercise Routine: chiropractors at GMG health and wellness will provide each and every patient with personalized exercise routine for patent’s specific needs.
If you experience Zoom fatigue or Zoom Syndrome, do not wait any longer. Schedule an appointment at GHG Health and Wellness in Mississauga so we can treat the source of the pain so you can live pain free.