Welcome Night Shift Work - Tips to Stay Healthy Members!
Welcome Members!

Night Shift Work - Tips to Stay Healthy

When your body lacks full rest, it is denied the opportunity to recover from the demands or stress placed on it resulting in poor function the following day. Practicing the healthy lifestyle behaviors necessary to keep the mind and body strong, such as getting enough good sleep can be especially difficult for shift workers. Luckily, QuadMed is here to help. The following tips and resources can help you stay healthy and rested, even when your regular routines are altered.

Man Asleep In Bed Wearing Smart Watch As Sun Breaks Through Curtains

Getting Enough Sleep

  • Prioritize going to bed right after your shift and don’t try to squeeze in chores or errands before you sleep
  • Find what works for you; some shift workers will take one long sleep period right after their night shift, while others prefer to get to 2 shorter sleep periods. Experiment with different sleep times and keep a log of when you go to sleep, when you wake and how rested you feel to learn what works best for you.
  • 20-30 minute naps in the afternoon or during a work break can help fight sleepiness, but be sure to allow enough time for drowsiness to wear off before returning to work duties. Naps works best when they allow extra sleep time, they are not meant to replace lost sleep time
  • Keep your bedroom cool and dark, use blackout curtains, turn off electronics that emit blue light which disrupts sleep patterns (tv, phone, tablets) and avoid caffeine, alcohol, heavy meals and exercise before bedtime
  • When switching back to days after working the night shift, try to get a short sleep right after your shift and then stay awake until your regular bedtime at night for an easier adjustment

Keep Your Mind and Body Healthy

  • Take a stretch break. Stretching increases blood flow and circulation which helps our bodies work more efficiently, which in turn allows us to work more efficiently
  • Exercise can keep your body healthy and help fight stress and illness. While shift workers should avoid exercise at least 3 hours before trying to sleep, it is beneficial to incorporate 20-30 minutes of aerobic activity before going on shift to help energize your body and mind.
  • Incorporating fruits and vegetables into your diet can provide many health benefits, including boosting your immune system. Aim for at least 5 servings a day
  • Drink more water – Though it seems minor, drinking more water can help to increase your alertness and flush toxins from your body. Aim to drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water every day
  • Adopt a regular meditation practice to alleviate stress and improve concentration. Give it a try today. Start by sitting still and breathing deeply for a few minutes. Practice a little bit each day and allow your mind to unwind.

Additional shift work resources can be found on the CDC website CLICK HERE.

For more valuable advice on staying well throughout the pandemic, and to stay connected to others, we encourage you to join the QuadMed Well-being Facebook group or subscribe to the QuadMed YouTube channel, where you can find exercise videos and more to keep you active, healthy and engaged.

"We'll keep you well;
and if you get sick,
we'll take care of that too."
- Harry V. Quadracci

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