The Third Shift is comprehended as the “Night Shift” or “Graveyard Shift.” Night Shift Workers suffer from “Shift Work Disorder.” Shift Work Disorder shows symptoms in night shift workers, early morning workers, or people who work rotating shifts.
Night shift hours differ from company to company and location to location. Their workers show similar symptoms regardless of company and location.
There is a list of symptoms shown by night shift workers. We will discuss only four of the major issues, which are:
- Health-linked Issues
- Sleep Disorders
- Mood Swings
- Quality of Life
Let’s have a look at these disorders one by one.
1. Health-Linked Issues
Night shifts cause sundry health issues with short-term and long-term effects on health. These problems are mainly linked to circadian rhythm disruption.
It controls our body’s day and night functions. When these functions are not synced, they cause health issues.
Let’s discuss them categorically. First, let’s talk about short-term ones.
Short-Term Health Issues
Short–term health issues can be recognized as an issue showing symptoms for a short period. These issues may include:
- Workers can have a constant indisposed feeling. These feelings can be subsided by going out or engaging in physical activity.
- Workers can be more prone to mistakes, accidents, and creating problems in the work and home environment. It can be prevented by having 7-8 hours of uninterrupted sleep.
- Gastro-intestinal manifestation. These manifestations can be nausea (due to lack of sleep) and heartburn (because of stomach function disruption). A rotation cycle of constipation and diarrhea as well. It can be prevented by using remedies or medicines to related ales.
Long-term issues are scarier than short-term ones because of their effect. It takes into account cardiovascular diseases, heart attacks, diabetes, and obesity.
Some of the long-term illnesses are grievous like ulcers (if constipation, heartburn, and diarrhea are constant), and gynecological issues in night shift female workers (problems of irregular periods, painful periods, and endometriosis). Prolonged exposure to these issues can also lead to cancer.
The abnormality of glucose supply causes diabetes. An unhealthy lifestyle is the cause of Type II Diabetes is notorious for night shift workers. Night jobs cause sleep disturbance, leading to impaired glucose tolerance and less insulin response.
If a worker already has diabetes or has genetically transferred, they should work for 4-5 hours a day. It will reduce predictor issues related to diabetes. But prolonged hours will worsen the condition. Patients with night jobs for elongated times have an 11% docked life probability.
There are multiple cardiovascular diseases. Related to Shift work disorder are:
- It means abnormal heart rhythms.
- Coronary artery disease means narrowing of the arteries.
- A heart attack means the heart is lagging in overall function.
According to the European Society of Cardiology, Workers of night jobs feel irregular heartbeats. Patients with night jobs are 35% more prone to coronary heart disease than those with day jobs.
They also find that women are more prone to heart inflations than men. Keeping a healthy heart is much important as it is the main supplier of clean blood to our body. To ensure the health of the heart, regular checkups are the key.
Conclusively, we can say that a healthy heart means a healthy person.
Calories need to be burned. Physical exercises are a must for night job workers to achieve that. The stack of calories is caused by internal clock disturbance. If physical activity is restricted or not done by the person, it will lead to obesity.
There are so many ways to challenge this situation. For obesity, exercises, yoga, cardio exercises, and diets are present. We will discuss it in the preclusions section.
Regarding all the above health issues, I can conclude that it occurs mainly because of the disruption of internal clocks or circadian rhythms. To maintain good health, A well-balanced life with a well-balanced diet is a must.
Night job workers cannot sleep properly. They face issues with completing sleep hours. Sleep hours for a regular and well-rested sleep are 7-8 hours. This sleep cycle depends on the timing of the shift. Timings can be variable from 8 hours- 12 hours. It usually takes 8-10 days to set a night routine.
The irregular sleep cycle causes “Shift Work Sleep Disorder.” This disorder shows:
- Struggle with sleep which is “Insomnia.”
Insomnia is related to low levels of melatonin. It can be cured by intake of prescribed melatonin tablets.
- Long hours of sleeping is an “Excessive Sleep Disorder.” It can be cured by doing exercise.
Sleep disorders are usually linked with melatonin scales. These disorders are curable. There are multiple remedies that we will discuss in the preclusion sections.
Mood swings are random behavioral patterns. It can be caused by:
- Lack of Sleep
- High anxiety levels
- Eating Disorder
Mood swings are:
- Lack of Solving Problem
These all are curable, But we will discuss cures in preclusions.
4. Quality of Life
Last but not least is quality of life. Quality of life is affected when a night job worker is working nights and facing all the above issues. They face difficulty in maintaining their health and job at the same time.
Specifically for mothers, it is a task to juggle three things simultaneously, even if they have help from their partners. Having a proper nutritionist and a therapist will help night job owners a lot. It can maintain their health as well as their work efficiency.
There are so many ways to reduce the effects of night shift disorders. Here are some to help you out.
As for Sleep Disorders go, Try to use these remedies:
- Curtail the contact to light. Try to get exposure to daylight more. It will help your internal clock to work better.
- Try to sleep in a quiet place and it should be dark.
- Try to adjust your sleep time and off-shift time according to your sleep hours. For example, if you have completed a shift of more than 12 hours you must take 48 hours off.
- Try to avoid caffeine, and nicotine as they will disrupt your sleep.
- Take short naps if possible.
- Warm milk is notorious to cure insomnia.
Now for Mood swings, What one can do is:
- Try to avail the opportunity to go outside of the house.
- Take walks.
- Must-do exercises, one can not emphasize enough on it. It will help boost your mood.
- Yoga classes are available.
In Conclusion, A night shift worker must follow these tips to make the life quality better. When the quality will be better, health will be boosted.