Working the nightshift offers a lot of benefits, such as higher pay and flexible daytime hours. But it can be difficult on the human body. How do you stay on track for your health when you have to work overnight? Paying attention to your sleep schedule is only the start. Here are a few tips that can help you make it through.
Skip the Caffeine
Whether you drink coffee or energy drinks, caffeine can give you a boost but it’s not a healthy one. They can help you stay up, but it’s false security that could be followed by a major crash. This is especially true if you drink sugary sodas or energy drinks. Instead, pick healthier alternatives like green tea or even just water to stay hydrated.
Pay Attention to Sun Exposure
Humans are designed to run on sunlight. That’s why many people have problems in the winter when there is less sun during the day. The same can happen when you work nights. But there are ways to give yourself more exposure to the sun. For instance, you can spend some time in the early morning or evening when the sun is still out. Or you can invest in a lamp designed for people who experience Seasonal Affected Disorder.
Make It Dark to Sleep
On the other hand, we’re biologically programmed to sleep when it’s dark. If you’re working nights and sleeping during the day, you need to create a dark sleeping environment. There is good news. There are a lot of things to help people sleep better on alternate schedules. Install blackout shades to keep closed when you sleep. Keep your room or home cooler while you’re sleeping as well.
Ask for Support
You don’t have to do this alone. Rely on support from family and friends to help you transition easily to a night shift position. Make sure everyone knows you are not to be disturbed while you sleep. You can also ask people to help you with things you would normally do during the day when everyone else is working.
Don’t Get Exhausted
It may feel like powering through is the best way to transition to a night shift, but that can lead to long term exhaustion and more dangerous health concerns. Sleep is critical, so it’s essential that you get enough of it. If you can’t sleep, talk to your doctor about other methods that can help you get enough sleep so you can work effectively at night.
Do you think a night shift position could work for you? ProStaff can help, so call us today.