Dealing With Shift Work

Dealing With Shift Work

Common symptoms for shift workers

  • Average 2-4 hours less sleep
  • Sleep is interrupted and shallow
  • Insomnia often occurs
  • Memory, concentration and motor skills are affected
  • Job performance decreases
  • Work related accidents increase

Tips to help deal with shift work

  • Sleep Schedule
    Overnight shift: Maintain a routine sleep schedule 7 days a week
    Rotating shift: Adjust sleep times 1-2 hours for the last few days of a rotation
    On Call shift: Napping can be helpful, but not a substitute
  • Sleep Aides
    Sleep aides should only be used on temporary basis under the care of a doctor.
  • Stimulants
    Caffeine in moderation can increase alertness, but should be stopped 4 hours prior to bedtime.
  • Sleep Hygiene
    Sleep in a dark, quiet, cool and comfortable place.
  • Diet
    Your diet should be high in protein and carbohydrates, and avoid fried foods. Do not go to bed hungry or just after having a large meal.


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