Nurses’ Lack of Sleep: Tips for Night-shifters

Many of us including nurses work on crazy schedules. One of the problems of being a nurse is the shifting schedules. How are you supposed to get enough sleep when you are on switching shifts? According to health experts, a person needs at least 8hours of quality sleep each night. It is also medically advised that sleeping during the day is not as restorative as sleeping at night.

Nightshift nurses or those who work with unpredictable shifts rarely get the right amount of sleep they need. This may cause them health problems such as tiredness, nausea even heart diseases, merely because of lacking of sleep.

Here are some recommendations for helping night-shifters or night workers sleep better that may or may not really work depending on the person.

Wearing sunglasses on the way home from work, according to other night-shifters works. It helps signals to the brain that your shift is over. Another tip is napping during lunch break. Studies indicate that just twenty minutes of sleep can make a person more alert. Some people call this as “power nap”. While others testify that this thing works, others say it just makes them more sleepy and exhausted. Limiting the caffeine intake especially two to four hours before sleeping time is another tip. This would prevent someone from the caffeine effect of staying awake all day/night. Also, sleeping and making the room as dark as one can and eliminating any noise that may disturb during the sleep may help. Another tip is to put a “Do not Disturb” note on the front door so that anyone who passes the door may feel obliged not to disturb you.

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These may be some of the tips nurses or night-shifters may try or it would be that sleeping well during the day is just something that one will have to get used too. If you are a regular night shifter, then it might be easier for you to set your body clock of sleeping at daytime. But if you are a nurse or one of those who have rotating shifts, this may be a big adjustment, having no body clock at all. Swapping back and forth between morning, afternoon and night; having crazy schedules, is one of the many problems nurses encounter. You may just need to get used to it and be more flexible and resourceful with your sleeping patterns.