Shift-related sleep problems vary according to work schedule

Objectives Shift-related sleep and sleepiness problems may be due to characteristics of both shifts (ie, day, evening and night shifts) and work schedules (ie, permanent vs rotational schedules). The Bergen Shift Work Sleep Questionnaire (BSWSQ) was used to investigate associations between shift-related sleep problems and work schedules. Methods 1586 nurses completed the BSWSQ. Participants who, in relation to a shift, ‘often’ or ‘always’ experienced both a sleep problem and a tiredness/sleepiness problem were defined as having shift-related insomnia (separate for day, evening and night shifts and rest-days). Logistic regression analyses were conducted for day, evening, night, and rest-day insomnia with participants on both permanent and rotational schedules. Results Shift-related insomnia differed between the work schedules. The evening shift insomnia was more prevalent in the two-shift rotation schedule than the three-shift rotation schedule (29.8% and 19.8%, respectively). Night shift insomnia showed higher frequencies among three-shift rotation workers compared with permanent night workers (67.7% and 41.7%, respectively). Rest-day insomnia was more prevalent among permanent night workers compared with two- and three-shift rotations (11.4% compared with 4.2% and 3.6%, respectively).

Source : Elisabeth Flo, Ståle Pallesen, Torbjørn Åkerstedt, Nils Magerøy, Bente Elisabeth Moen, Janne Grønli, Inger Hilde Nordhus, Bjørn Bjorvatn. Shift-related sleep problems vary according to work schedule. Occup Environ Med 2013;70:4 238-245. http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/oemed-2012-101091 

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