Shift work sleep disorder: The Risk of Insufficient Sleep

Around 100 million Americans make important professional and personal decisions when sleep-deprived. Skipping sleep costs $150 billion a year in productivity and accidents.

The 2020 National Sleep Foundation (NSF) annual poll found that Americans felt “sleepy” three times a week during their awake hours. 62% tried to “shrug it off.”

Before 1879, most individuals slept 10 hours a night. For the following century, we slept eight hours every night, 20% less. Recent studies show that Americans sleep seven hours each night, and one third sleep less than six. In a 24-hour world that devalues sleep, many are reducing back to make time for other pursuits. .

Sleep is part of the healthy triad—exercise, diet, and sleep—but doctors seldom talk about it. While reducing medical expenditures, employers seldom consider workers’ sleep patterns. “In the context of damage, there is no better risk-mitigating insurance police…than sleep,” argues UC Berkeley Sleep and Neuroimaging Lab Director Matthew Walker in Why We Sleep.

Shift work sleep disorder

As his assembly lines made night shifts economically possible, Henry Ford is frequently blamed for shift-work sleep  disorder problems. According to human biology, working the night shift is hard.

Most night workers struggle. Working at night is abnormal since humans are programmed to be busy during the day and tired at night. Shift workers labor in abnormal time.

According to US and European polls, night workers sleep two hours less each day, or 10 hours per week. They also sleep less soundly. Night employees focus on sleep.

When someone changes their sleep-wake cycle, circadian realignment takes a week. Most night shift employees never fully acclimate to any schedule since they rarely keep the same sleep/wake timings on days off. Realignment hurts their mood, performance, and well-being. Beyond age 40, circadian rhythm changes take longer.

Working the graveyard shift (11 p.m.-7 a.m.) can cause digestive issues, cardiovascular illness, high cholesterol, depression, anxiety, blunders, accidents, and divorce.

Shift employment disrupts families, which may explain why. The shift worker’s inability to be there at night might cause marital troubles and leave the spouse at home feeling lonely and insecure.

Even while the nighttime shift doesn’t affect sleep, it nonetheless destroys the shift work sleep disorder social life and family life.
Modvigil 200(Provigil) and Modalert 200 is used to treat excessive sleepiness in patients with narcolepsy and
residual sleepiness in certain cases of sleep apnea. Scientists believe the drug affects the sleep-wake centers
in the brain. The most common side effect is a headache.

Shift Work Solutions Include:

  • Turning clockwise. Our bodies acclimatize better from day to evening to night shifts than vice versa.
    Sleeping regularly, especially on weekends
    Maintaining daily mealtimes
    Keeping active during shift breaks
    Avoiding coffee after a night shift.
    Avoiding tiresome duties at the end of the shift, when you’re weary and less aware.
    Planning pre-work naps. Third-shift employees can take a 45-minute sleep before work to boost attentiveness for 6 hours. A “caff sleep” can also help us overcome our biology. Drinking coffee 30 minutes before a 20-minute snooze can help. Caffeine “kicks in” when the napper wakes up.
    1469 shift employees surveyed in 2021 valued schedule openness and flexibility. 65 percent prioritized scheduling notice to better manage their life. 96 percent felt that shift employees deserve “more respect” and acknowledgement of the value of their profession.

An Catastrophe Waiting to Happen

Australian researchers showed that after 17 hours of being up, a group of sleep-deprived volunteers got the same results on performance tests as drinking subjects who had blood alcohol levels of 0.05 percent. After 24 hours of being up, the sleep-deprived group showed the same coordination deficiencies as individuals with a blood alcohol level of 0.1 percent.

It was reported that 56 percent of shift employees fall asleep on the job at least once a week, and 70-90 percent of industrial and transportation accidents are attributable to human error.


While many of us are considerably sleep deprived, we remain ignorant of how much it impacts our mood, performance, and conduct. We quickly explain whatever lethargy we experience after a large meal, or if we’re in a heated room, or listening to a tedious lecture: we credit our sleepiness to these “causes” and not to an underlying sleep debt.

The difference between a full, lively, healthy existence, and a reduced one, may be as little as an extra 30 minutes of sleep per night. In the long term, shortchanging sleep depletes our mental clarity and diminishes our ability for sustained performance.

Well-slept people are more engaged, can hold more thoughts in their brain concurrently, and can think through new concepts more clearly.

Employers who want the best for their employees, and the best from their employees, should help them understand the importance of sleep for their well-being, provide them with information to make good lifestyle choices when it comes to sleep, and schedule shifts in ways that are least disruptive to human biology.

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Krish is an inbound Content marketing specialist at SEO SMO Company. He loves to write on trending topics in different categories like Technology, fashion, travel, health etc. Connect for the ROI focused content marketing services.

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