Usually any normal person wakes up in the morning, have breakfast, go to the office and work from 9 to 5, come back home, have dinner and sleep. However, growing demand of business has brought a culture of working in shifts. Doctors, nurses, policemen, firefighters and factory workers are the ones who frequently work in shifts and are at greater risk at developing a shift work sleep disorder.
The biggest trouble working in shifts is to develop severe health problems including shift work sleep disorder (SWSD). The problem occurs when your work schedule and your biological clock aren’t in sync with each other. When your body wants to sleep, your work starts and you sleep during the abnormal time wherein your body doesn’t want. Over the time, you create many health complications for yourself inviting trouble.
It has been seen that people with SWSD have higher rates of absenteeism and accidents due to untimely and unscheduled sleepiness than night workers without the disorder. When you work in shifts you do not have fix schedule for sleeping, eating or waking up and even one manage to escape the wrath of SWSD at times but still have greater risk for it until you make healthy changes in your lifestyle.
Shift workers who are sleep deprived often get easily irritated or depressed and find difficulty in focusing or memorizing the task. You’re standing at the edge of developing critical health problems such as ulcers, metabolic syndrome and heart disease.
Even though the work demands to work in shifts or you seem to find difficult to escape from working in shifts, you can still manage to work in shifts provided that you follow regular sleep schedule. Here are some tips that can help you to sleep better:
- If, in case, you’re diagnosed with shift work sleep disorder, you will be given medications such as Waklert. Waklert promotes wakefulness and alertness in the individuals with SWSD increasing energy and concentration in them.
- Waklert should be taken as prescribed by your doctor.
- Avoid long commutes that take time away from sleeping.
- Avoid working in extended hours or prolonged shifts to ensure that you have enough time to sleep and enjoy family time and social activities.
- Avoid frequently rotating shifts. It is more difficult to deal with rotating shifts than working in a same shift for a longer period of time.
- Get enough sleep on your days off. Maintain a sleep schedule and regularly follow it.
- Limit your intake of caffeine intake and alcohol. People who work in night shifts often puff a cigarette in the company of others but ill effects of smoking are countless and one of them is impairing the quality of your sleep.
- Make sure that your bedroom is sleep-friendly. Block out light in your bedroom when you sleep during the day.
- Pull down curtains and wear an eye mask to prevent light. Keep the temperature in the room comfortable to sleep.
- Eat a diet that is rich in nutrients and vitamins. Exercise daily to boost your overall health.