General Question

rockvj's avatar

How to best brave/adjust your system for night shift work?

Asked by rockvj (59points) July 21st, 2007

I've recently got a job as a night manager for a hostel. This involved shifts of 9pm to 9am, 4 days on, 4 days off. It's not ideal, but it's just a summer job. Anyone have tips on how to best adjust your system...foods you can eat to stay awake but not mount up the calories, and things you can do to sleep better during the day?


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4 Answers

glial's avatar

I worked from 2:00 am until 10:00 am for about 8 months once upon a time. Honestly, I never got used to it. Your schedule doesn't sound as brutal, but it is hard to go against nature. Sleep as much as you can during your offtime and get to sleep as quickly as you can when you get off of work.

extolsmith's avatar

I worked nights, processing mail for United States Postal Service, for a 6 months. I enjoyed the hours and was able to sleep and feel rested, though many of my coworkers never did get used to it.

Here are the things, I think made a difference for me.

Eat breakfast after work and just before bed. Cover the windows in your bedroom to not allow light in. Go to sleep when you first get home. Do not set an alarm. Try to be active before work. It it seems difficult to make the transition to going to sleep after work, take a Non-Aspirin PM just to get you into the routine.

ironhiway's avatar

4 days on 4 days off sounds like a pretty good schedual to me. I don’t have a set shift any more here it is 1:25AM and I’m working ok well I’m at work. my next shift is a day shift. But I worked a regular 11PM – 7AM shift years ago 24+ years ago and I found that the most important thing is that I got some sleep whether right after work or a few hours before work. So you have to plan when your going to sleep and stick to your plan especially with a 12 hour shift like yours. bright light ideally a lamp with a bulb that mimicks natural sun light also will help adjust your inner clock to match your new schedual.

debib's avatar

I just started the 11–7 shift after 11 years of not working at all. At first I really could’nt see straight then I got to thinking and did some math. If I went to bed about 1pm and slept til 8pm I could get up and mimick my day routine goofing around,shopping whatever. When I get home about 8am I stay up til 1, eat breakfast, it’s also more free time to be normal.In order to sleep I take all my vitamins and a melatonin before I go to bed and so far it’s working out pretty good. Still I hope I dont have to do it long, Good Luck with your shift

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