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Shift Work

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posted on Feb, 16 2014 @ 05:40 PM
For 1 year now I have been in a job I enjoy.
Lately I have been thinking about my work pattern and if I have properly adjusted to my day/night routine.
I work over 28 days doing 3 on 2 off
2 on 3 off, sounds great but its dayshift 3 nightshift 2 dayshift 2 nightshift 3. Constant change from day to nights,
I think maybe a longer spell on days or nights would be better but I wonder what you guys think about my body clock? And if you think this is sustainable, I get good holidays and stuff I aint complaining, im happy to have a job.

posted on Feb, 16 2014 @ 05:56 PM
reply to post by michael1888

How old are you?
I find as I get older I find it harder to adjust. Naturaly I'm a night bird. I'll work your night shift for you

posted on Feb, 16 2014 @ 06:03 PM
reply to post by michael1888

Hi Michael. If you're young and unmarried and without kids, then it's doable, but it is brutal. I did it, but I found the sleep recovery time stressful and more difficult with the passage of time. When I began to feel unwell and sluggish, I went to get checked out and it was discovered that I had cardiac changes brought on by low potassium. I recovered, but when I had children I found myself in a similar shift situation and it was worse. So I tried the permanent shift route which didn't help. Some people seem to adjust to shift changes, but I know it almost killed me. Here's wishing you all the best.

posted on Feb, 16 2014 @ 06:05 PM
Hey there.
You know, my first "real job" was a series of ever changing, ever repeating shifts. Rotating shifts, that is. But ours were for longer spells.
7 days on, then almost 2 days off, 7 evenings on, then almost 2 days off, 7 midnights on, then almost 5 days off.
something like that. Like you, it added up to 28 days, then repeat.

There were some extra benefits. Shift differentials. Where there was a boost in pay for the evening, and midnight shifts.
Plus they were 9 hours long...and we were payed overtime for the 9th hour.
It was an agreement between Allied Aerospace (our name at the time) and the Navy. SO yeah, your tax dollars..LOL

It was pretty tolerable, especially that 5 day recharging period. But even then, there were times when you went off your body-clock to attempt to hang out with folks on normal time. So sometimes I was on Auto-pilot.

I remember once, spending all-day at the company picnic. um er, drinking beer . And I mean ALL DAY.LOL
Then going in for my Midnight shift with no sleep, spending the whole night attempting to ward off a hangover. While performing remote tasks on "things" that were in orbit around the Earth. I survived, and so did those things I was responsible for!!

The thought of doing your short-shifts make me cringe a little. Not sure if I could have handled that quick turnaround. Do you think they might attempt to stretch them out to longer stints? Seems they could get more productivity out of people who get a chance to acclimate to those ever changing hours.

posted on Feb, 16 2014 @ 06:10 PM
Hi there i have noticed that the older i get, the more my sleeping patern is important, i have been working nights for the past 20 years, schedule changes for summer winter schedule, winters i start at 7 pm, summers 4:30 pm, i do 12 hour shifts 3 days a week, i then have my young kids with me on my days off. Im having a harder time every year with how tired i am and how to juggle night shift and then normal hours when my kids are home.

I try to stay healthy but im slowly turning into a zombie.

Good luck with your job.

posted on Feb, 16 2014 @ 07:25 PM
reply to post by michael1888

Lets see what studies have been done on this one.

According to 2004 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, almost 15 million Americans work full time on evening shift, night shift, rotating shifts, or other employer arranged irregular schedules. The International Labor Office in 2003 reports that working hours in the United States exceed Japan and most of western Europe. Both shift work and long work hours have been associated with health and safety risks. This page provides links to NIOSH publications and other resources that address demanding work schedules.

Now thats just in the USA,lets look at some other countries.

From Australia :


Shiftwork (working shifts) can affect health. The body is synchronised to night and day by a part of the brain known as the circadian clock. A shiftworker confuses their circadian clock by working when their body is programmed to be sleeping. Common health problems include sleep disorders, digestive upsets, obesity and heart disease.

From the UK :

Factors influencing shiftwork exposure and health
Many health impairments associated with
shiftwork have been reported. These
include psychosomatic disorders of the gastroin
testinal tract (colitis, gastroduodenitis, and
peptic ulcer) and of the cardiovascular system
(hypertension, ischaemic heart diseases), as
well as metabolic disturbances,
that are influenced by other
time- and work-related factors
and behaviours (Costa, 1996; Knutsson, 2003).
About 20% of all workers have to stop shiftwork altogether after a very brief period
because of serious health problems, 10% do no
t complain about shiftwork during their
whole working life, while the remaining 70% withstand shiftwork with different levels of
intolerance that can become more or less ma
nifest at different times and with different
intensity in terms of discomforts
, troubles or diseases .

I could go on and on about all the studies done on this,with long work hours, and shift rotations. Lets just suffice it to say, shift work IS dangerous for your health.

Mallinckrodt has always had rotating shifts for the floor workers. I know because my father in law worked there for 28 years. It would have been 30 but he started having heart attacks and strokes. The doctors were stunned. There was no reason they could find for it happening,he was skinny, in good shape, smoked a bit,not much,ate very well,and yet here he was having heart attacks.(a bit later strokes too). By the time he had his second one the studies had come out and the doctors chalked it up to the shift work. You would think he would have been used to it after 28 years,but instead it just built up and then,that was it. It may not get you today or tomorrow,but in time you will pay for doing shift work.

posted on Feb, 16 2014 @ 07:56 PM
Scientific studies have shown that the effect from constantly changing shifts are even more detrimental to the body than poor eating choices.
From personal experience, I think it should be against the law. The long term health repercussions and expenses aren't cost effective.

posted on Feb, 16 2014 @ 08:36 PM
reply to post by michael1888

Im away from home so much my dog BITES ME when I do get there...Youve just defined my life on and off for the last 30 or so years.

Im on afternoons m-fri with the potential of forced ot 4hrs, with a mandatory turnover of at least 8 hrs rest between return shifts.

That with volunteered ot, mixed with regular and forced my volunteering and newsletter just means Im always at work, going to work...or just coming home from work. I sleep whenever and get what I can when I can.

And besides the dog, I have a wife at home too. At least...I think she still lives there!

EMT/ERT (Emergency-Dispatch-Search and Rescue)
ADLS Life Support

posted on Feb, 16 2014 @ 09:20 PM
reply to post by michael1888

I used to be a train driver. The shift work was one of the main reasons for stopping.
This one week on the job had a dude that was doing a study on shift work. He had done a week of day shifts the week before. He was meant to ride around with me for three nights. First night he was late and missed the train. Second night he showed up and lasted a couple of hours before he was dozing off. I would keep waking he up and in the end told him if he fell asleep again he would have to get off. Third night didn't show up.
He may have had about 4 hrs of awake time on night shift, but his report of how easy it was gave all the bosses they needed to tell us to stop complaining about the shift work.

posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 01:07 PM
reply to post by VoidHawk

I am 28 with a young kid, I manage ok. When I come off nights with 2 recovery days back on too days I find most difficult.

posted on Feb, 17 2014 @ 01:09 PM
reply to post by spacedoubt

Unfortunately my short shifts are 12 hours, this is when the short recovery becomes a problem.

posted on Feb, 21 2014 @ 09:52 AM
reply to post by michael1888

I work 3-4 121/2 night shifts a week. I have worked nights for years. I find split nights the hardest. The turn round time is ok if you have 3-4 days off, but can be a killer if you only have a day or two off in between. Winter can also be a pain. You never see daylight. It is dark when you get up, and you might get an hour or two before you go back to bed. As I get older, I find it getting harder. As for social life, it is fortunate that I am a hermit by nature.

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