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How to Avoid Shift Work Sleep Disorder

Posted by Sile on 4/15/2019 11:12:27 AM

How to Avoid Shift Work Sleep Disorder

There are approximately 32.5 million employed people currently living in the UK. National research shows 12% of the workforce carries out shift work. Between 10% and 30% of the people who are recorded as working shifts suffer from Shift Work Sleep Disorder (SWSD). Shift workers follow a schedule that differs from the traditional 9-5 meaning that traditional sleeping patterns can be affected.

What is Shift Work Sleep Disorder?

Shift work sleep disorder occurs when your sleep cycle is desynchronised following upset sleeping patterns due to shift work. More than just being sleepy all the time, sufferers can experience dizziness, insomnia and a lack of energy leading them to becoming more accident prone and vulnerable to health risks such as metabolic and gastrointestinal problems. In the simplest of terms, shift work can be dangerous to your health.

Shift Work Sleep Disorder (SWSD) is a confirmed and deep-rooted ailment that is immediately related to a person’s working hours. The disorder is thought to be caused by your circadian rhythm which is your internal 24 hour body clock. This clock runs in the background of your brain, telling the body when sleep is needed and when you should be alert and awake.

How to avoid Shift Work Sleep Disorder

Maintaining a regular sleep schedule will help your body to adjust to the change in routine. Avoiding stimulants like coffee and tea will help you rest better. Ensuring you get the recommended 8 hours gives you time to refresh and repair. Limiting disturbances during your sleep hours can be difficult especially if you need to sleep through the day. BlocOut™ blackout blinds will help you to create darkness in your room to increase the melatonin levels your body needs to drift off naturally regardless of the light outside.

Roller blind solutions

There are many ways we can help people with these demanding jobs and limit the amount of those that fall into the Shift Work Sleep Disorder (SWSD) trap. One of the most powerful indicators to your brain that you need to sleep is simply the amount of light in a room. Restricting or removing the light entering the bedroom can help you to change your body clock to be in sync with your shifts. Bloc Blinds provide a complete blackout solution if you, or anyone in your family, require complete darkness to sleep. The made to measure BlocOut™ Blackout Blinds will ensure unrivalled darkness for naturally induced sleep. Whatever your needs we have the right, style shape and size for you.

Simple changes

Sleep deprivation may increase over several nights, so it’s best to schedule days off in between night shifts to give yourself time to recover by avoiding shift work multiple days in a row and extended working hours. Exposing yourself to bright light at the start of your “day”will notify your brain that it’s awake time and time to be alert.  

If you're worried about Shift Work Sleep Disorder (SWSD) don't be embarrassed to visit your GP. In more severe cases some people may need medication temporarily to help. Your doctor will talk you through the best treatment.

We hope the advice in this article helps you achieve a restful and energising sleep, preparing you for the shift ahead


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