Nurses work hard; they have to. The demands of the medical system are so extreme that it’s not uncommon to find nurses working twelve-hour shifts as standard.
Perhaps one of the most difficult aspects of the job is the night shift. Just because it’s past five o’clock in the evening doesn’t mean that the needs of patients suddenly disappear. Hospitals need people on call 24-hours per day, including during the early hours of the morning when the vast majority of us are asleep.
Working night shifts, however, can lead to a host of health problems and reduced performance at work. Working late can make it challenging to get the right amount of sleep. Nurses often find that their natural sleep cycle is pulling them in one direction and their shift rota in quite another.
The dangers of the night shift are well-documented. Working late can lead to a host of issues, including reduced cognitive performance, suddenly falling asleep on the job, reduced reaction times and reduced learning speed.
As the following infographic shows, a lack of sleep brought on by night shift patterns can lead to medical errors which affect patients and could potentially put lives at risk. It’s essential, therefore, that nurses take precautions and do whatever they can to reduce the impact of the night shift and do their work effectively.
Do you work as a nurse? Would you like to find out how to correct sleepiness while on the job? Check out the following infographic for advice and recommendations.
Infographic by Bradley University