The human body is designed to work in the daytime and rest at night. But not everyone has a work routine which resembles the traditional 9-5 day. About 15 million Americans work full time on an evening shift, night shift or rotating shifts. This trend is not limited to the U.S but becoming famous in other parts of the world too.
People all over the world are getting engaged in shift work or long work hours. The reason can be a desire to earn extra money, a need for a job or pressure of work. Professions involving shift work are doctors and nurses, police officers, customer service agents, food service workers, pilots, drivers etc.
Whatever the reason be, if you are a night shift worker, it can affect your health. Being aware of the health issues you can face helps you to take suitable measures for them.
Let’s take a look on some common effects of night shift schedule on your body.
Sleep Disturbances :
Working in a shift or for long hours can have negative effects on your sleep. The people who are in such professions often get a less than six hours sleep in a day.
This can lower the levels of serotonin which a “feel good hormone”. The imbalance between the normal working of the body and shift routine is a prime reason for sleeping problems.
Causes Obesity :
Not sleeping according to the natural biological clock of the body can lead to obesity. As per the reports of many researchers, it is seen that increasing night shift work affects the Body Mass Index.
The modified eating habits of night shift workers can lead to obesity or overweight. It is because the body processes food in a different manner at night than in the day.
Heart Problems :
Not getting enough sleep or being overweight can raise the risk of problems related to the heart. While working in a night shift, a lot of metabolic changes take place in the body.
Data of research reports show that night workers can have the problem of high cholesterol levels. This can be another reason for getting any heart problem.
It can have an impact on your Mental health too. All the stress, pressure and sleep disturbances can be a cause for the mood disorders like depression. People working in night shifts develop the habits of smoking, drinking and suffer from fatigue. All such factors can have bad effects on our health and cause depression.
Stomach Problems :
Shift work is not at all good for your stomach health. In fact, it can cause or worsen the signs like constipation, nausea, pains, gas, acidity and irritable bowel syndrome. This happens because the night workers modify their calorie intake; change the timings, frequency, and content of their meals. Plus the food is cold and often eaten in a hurry.
At night, the body slows down the metabolic and digestion process. Eating any heavy meal can cause acidity, gas and abdominal pains. Moreover, the disturbance in the sleep cycle affects the stomach and can break the regularity of bowel movements. This leads to the problem of constipation and sitting in an office with this issue is not a good thing as you’ll not be able to concentrate in your work.
Few Healthy Tips for Night Shift Workers:-
- To avoid sleep at work you often choose caffeinated drinks like tea/coffee. But in reality these can dehydrate your body, so, instead of them drink 8-10 glasses of water.
- There must be a consistency in the timings of your shift work. A repeating cycle of morning shift one day, next day afternoon shift and then night can disturb the health. Your job timings should be consistent for at least a month or two.
- Never go hungry to bed as it can disturb the sleep and make you feel restless.
- Avoid eating fatty favorites like potato chips, fries or any food item which take longer to digest and increase weight.
- Carry fresh homemade food and eat healthy snacks.
So, these are some of the problems you can face when working in a shift job. The points given above can help you to cope up with such job timings. In case you often feel gastric problems like gas, acidity and the severe one “constipation”. You can take ayurvedic constipation powder; Pet Saffa. It’s an herbal formulation and works on the walls of the stomach in a gentle manner. This natural laxative powder helps to give relief from constipation in an easy manner. You can use Pet Saffa as an ayurvedic medicine for constipation.
If you liked reading this article, like and share it with others. You can share your suggestions with us in the comment box below.