For all passengers of transatlantic flights, the day turns into night, and night – in a day, and a few days will pass before the bewildered organism adapts itself to the new regime. But some people live in this state all the time. These are medical personnel, waiters, security guards, police, military personnel, pilots, workers of gas stations, printing plants, chemical plants and many others who, due to their profession, have to work at night. Work at night is unnatural for the human body, and therefore, has a negative effect on health. Violation of the natural life rhythm weakens the immune system and creates the conditions for the growth of cancer cells.
In another study, it was found that shift work changes the production of insulin and leptin, the satiety hormone. Observing 20 participants in the experiment who slept during the day and stayed awake at night, the scientists noted their increased appetite and weight gain associated with fluctuations in the level of these hormones. In addition, night activity led to a jump in cortisol, a stress hormone. As a result, participants have received the increased blood pressure and blood sugar, a condition that is characteristic of the initial stage of diabetes. But Argentine scientists have found that night workers have a lower level of serotonin, and this causes irritability, a tendency to depression and sleep disorders. As people tend to sleep at night, the concentration of attention at this time is reduced.
People who often work on night shifts become more scattered. Doctors at night make mistakes more often, drivers get into road accidents, and workers employed in hazardous industries risk becoming victims of a production accident. People who work for a long time in this mode, often have bad mood: they become more irritable and aggressive; they accumulate fatigue. Often night worker distances from the family, children, and even completely deprives communication.
If a person works long hours during the night shifts, there may develop a chronic lack of sleep. Going to bed in the morning, few people sleep 7-8 hours in a row – as much as at night. In addition, daytime sleep is less deep than night one, since it does not correspond to natural biorhythms. In this situation, various health problems may arise. Immunity is to be weakened, colds are becoming more common, and the susceptibility to influenza is growing. Many people working on the night shift complain of constipation because they can’t empty the bowels at the right time of the day. Lack of sleep also affects metabolism, because enzymes and hormones are less active.
Some useful tips:
- follow the daily routine,
- get enough sleep. An adult should sleep at least 7-8 hours a day,
- try to sleep a couple of hours before the night shift. It is best to sleep in the morning for 5-6 hours, and then sleep for another 2 hours before leaving for work,
- be careful with caffeine. If you need to bring yourself to life quickly, it is better to eat a sweet fruit,
- use sunglasses. On the way home, put on sunglasses; otherwise, sunlight will cheer you up and deprive you of sleep,
- take care of darkening the room. Daytime sleep is less deep than night, and light can interfere with full rest,
- eat a healthy diet. It is advisable to stick to healthy food, eat less at night and reduce the consumption of sweet.
With regard to the use of drugs, there are already drugs that allow a person to maintain concentration and the right level of attention even when the regime is violated. Such medicines include Provigil. Modafinil in Provigil will help you not to sleep more than 40 hours and at the same time to be active and attentive. However, taking it on an ongoing basis for work requires monitoring by the doctor to avoid negative consequences.