Shift working can be quite difficult. It can affect your mental and physical health over time if you do not learn tips and tricks to balance your lifestyle. Everyone adapts to shift work differently, for some it can be easier while for others it is an absolute nightmare. If your work hours are constantly changing and you are working late into the night, or perhaps graveyard shifts, it can make your life a living hell. Sleep deprivation, poor diet, and tiredness are some of the common side effects for people who work in shift jobs. Our body is not made to stay awake in the night and sleep in the morning, Our body’s clock will go haywire which responds to light, every hormone works to keep the body clock working. If you start to sleep on a different schedule and stay awake and remain alert at night your body gets confused and sends all sorts of mixed signals. You might develop stomach issues, stress disorders, insomnia, and more. While we cannot change our inherent features, we can change our behaviour or make lifestyle modifications to make shift work more bearable.
The following are ten things you would need as a shift worker:
1. Blue Light Sunglasses
Blue light exposure has been linked to age-related macular degeneration, or AMD, according to research. According to one study, blue light causes harmful chemicals to be released in photoreceptor cells. This damages the retina, which can lead to AMD. Electronic gadget blue light disrupts your circadian rhythm, or sleep cycle. It tells your brain to wake up when it’s supposed to be sleeping. In one study, even 2 hours of blue light exposure during the night reduced or prevented the release of the sleep hormone melatonin. Exposure to blue light may increase your risk of developing some malignancies. A blue light filter may block up to 94% of blue light from entering your eyes. Photochromic glasses allow you to adjust to light both inside and outside, protect you from the sun’s harmful UV rays, and shield you from blue light emitted by various electronic device screens. Wearing blue-blocking glasses two hours before the conclusion of a shift and before bed at home improves tiredness by signalling the body’s melatonin production. For many night shift employees battling with exhaustion and the health difficulties that come with little sleep, bluelight preventative lens eyewear may be the best alternative.
2. A Peaceful Dark Room
When it comes to getting a decent night’s sleep, light is the single most important aspect, especially on night shift. When it’s dark outside, your body naturally creates melatonin, which it converts back to serotonin when it’s light. Reducing light during the day is vital if you want to obtain a decent night’s sleep during the day. Blackout curtains are a simple answer to this prevalent issue faced by shift workers. These curtains can block out all sorts of light, including sunlight and automobile headlights, allowing for a more pleasant night’s sleep. Furthermore, blackout curtains provide additional insulation to the room, allowing it to remain cool in the summer and warm in the winter, promoting better sleep. If you live with folks who don’t work the same hours as you, noise is almost always unavoidable. Noises from outside, such as construction, a neighbor’s dog, children, a plane, and traffic, are all common in the morning. Soundproofing your bedroom is the answer. Putting up a soundproofing mat on the wall and leaning heavy furniture against it. Sealing holes in your roof can help soundproof it and improve your sleep.
3. A Comfortable Mattress
On a worn, old mattress, you can’t expect to get a decent night’s sleep. It’s possible that it’s time to examine the tags on your mattress! If your mattress is more than ten years old, it’s time to replace it. A bad lumpy, sunk, and deformed mattress will only make you toss and turn the whole time you are trying to fall asleep. Old mattresses can squeak, and don’t provide enough support while you sleep. There are so many mattresses in the market that you can choose from. Latex foam puts less peak pressure on the body than memory foam. While memory foam is firmer and helps to sleep better. A combination of latex and memory foam mattress can help aid sleepers in maintaining a comfortable sleeping temperature and position. If you have an old mattress, this is the right way to change it. You will fall asleep faster and get a more restful sleep when you have a better mattress in your house.
4. Eye Mask And Ear Plug
Eye masks and ear plugs are essential for sleeping during the day. If you are sleeping when everyone else is awake and there is commotion outside, sunlight seeping through the curtain, especially if you live with roommates who have different schedules than you, you need an eye mask and ear plug to sleep better. Eye masks can help reduce the intensity of sunlight and ear plugs reduce the outside noise. The use of an ear plug reduces noise intensity, which aids in the reduction of auditory perceptual processing. The intensity of light is reduced by wearing an eye mask, which increases melatonin secretion (involves the endocrine system). Additionally, wearing an eye mask facilitates the use of the cognator subsystem by reducing visual perceptual processing. A good quality eye mask that is soft on your skin, comfortable and sits well on your face is important. There are a lot of options available online that you can choose from. Foam ear plugs are comfortable to wear while you sleep and reduce outside noise.
5. Easy Meal Recipes
Trying to figure out what to prepare and what to eat can be quite the hassle. However, the way to maintain a happy and healthy life both physically and mentally is to have a good diet. Home cooked meals are the best to get all the nutrients without intaking preservatives. It is obvious that you won’t always have the time to make exsavarant meals for yourself. Having a bunch of easy and quick recipes that fills you up, tastes good and provides adequate nutrients, can make your life a lot easier. Buy easy and quick cookbook recipes online, try making yourself something new every day so you don’t get bored with the food.
6. Sunrise Alarm Clock
A sunrise alarm clock, also known as a dawn simulation light, is a device that incorporates an artificial light source into a normal digital clock. It is programmed to gently awaken a person at a predetermined time. It accomplishes this by simulating the gradually growing light of sunrise over a period of 30 to 40 minutes, while certain versions may allow the duration to be altered between 15 and 60 minutes. If you are sleeping in the morning and waking up in the afternoon or evening due to shift work, this alarm clock will help your body adjust to the sleep cycle better. The light of the alarm clock simulates natural morning lights making your brain think it is morning and helping you wake up naturally instead of forcing yourself to wake with the irritating sound of your alarm clock. The colour spectrum, often known as colour temperature (or “warmth”), of this light may differ slightly from one model to the next. There are several sunrise alarm clocks available in the market that you can customize and use.
7. Insulated Lunch Box
Getting proper nutrients for night shift workers is a chore. Firstly you have your whole schedule upside down. You need to prepare a meal and bring it to work since canteens and restaurants are not open during the night. You need to keep the food fresh and make sure your food doesn’t turn stale when you open it for consumption. Appetizing food is as important as a healthy meal if you want to have a balanced diet. To keep food fresh and lasting longer, use an insulated lunch bag or cooler with ice packs. When you have insulated lunch boxes you can enjoy your food exactly how you like it and at the appropriate temperature. So, you don’t have to search for a microwave, or stand in line to get the microwave. Why waste your lunch hours trying to heat up food when you can eat it as is. The insulated steel boxes’ strong insulated walls have the ability to keep the temperature stable.
8. Insulated Tumbler
You’re not alone if you need a cup of coffee or a cup of tea to get through the work hour. Although cutting caffeine from your diet is a much better idea if you are working a shift job, some people prefer the energy boost they get from drinking coffee. You can also carry tea or other hot beverages in the tumbler. You could also carry cold juice or other cold beverages and sip it throughout the day. A tumbler cup should be a night shift worker’s work essential. From hot drinks like coffee and hot chocolate to ice cold sports drinks and other beverages can be stored in multipurpose stainless steel tumblers. It is hard to find shops open, the canteen of your workplace might also not be open at night. Carrying your owl beverage will make things so much easier for you at work. Having a tasty beverage by your side keeps you having a sip of it every few minutes and keeping yourself hydrated. You could also refill it with a beverage of your choice and drink it throughout the day.
9. Comfortable Socks
It may appear that wearing socks in bed will cause your feet to warm. However, this behaviour may actually aid the body’s internal temperature management. Adults who wear socks to bed sleep better. This is due to the fact that during the night, a person’s core body temperature lowers, reaching its lowest point about 4 a.m. The average body temperature is 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit (°F), however it fluctuates by 1 to 2 degrees during the day. Vasodilation occurs when blood vessels dilate as a result of warming the feet and hands. This helps to lower core body temperature by releasing heat through the skin. You feel warm and comfortable when you wear good quality socks. Good thing is you can easily remove your socks if you feel too hot at night.
10. A Sleep Tracking Mechanism
Sleep tracking devices can be quite helpful in identifying patterns in your sleeping habits. You can study the data and understand your sleeping patterns and make necessary changes to get the optimal sleep. Night shift work can be difficult to manage if you don’t know how your body functions, what are the patterns you follow and what makes you get proper sleep everyday. With sleep tracking devices you can’t collect all that data without having to physically keep track of it all. Do you feel tired when you sleep without having any meal yet energised when you workout before going to bed. Do you sleep better in a cooler room or in a warmer one? Consuming certain kinds of food or beverages is making your sleep less. These are all the data you can collect and store.