Researchers have found that nurses are at an increased risk of sleep deprivation and sleep disorders such as chronic insomnia.
Published in the journal Sleep, the study found that there is a high prevalence of insufficient sleep and symptoms of common sleep disorders among nurses working at medical centres.
“We were surprised by the number of nurses potentially suffering from common sleep disorders, most notably chronic insomnia and shift work disorder,” said lead author Francis Christian from the University of Oklahoma in the US.
For the study, the research team conducted an online survey of 1,165 nurses. They were questioned on topics such as their sleep schedule and medications they took to induce sleep.
It was found that on an average, nurses slept less than 6.6 hours per night while a healthy person should sleep for at least 7-8 hours per night.
Symptoms consistent with chronic insomnia were identified in 31 per cent of nurses, 27 per cent of nurses used medications to help them sleep, and 13 per cent reported using medications to stay awake, said the researchers.
Symptoms indicative of shift work disorder were present in 31 per cent of the nurses. About 18.5 per cent of nurses also had a moderate-to-severe risk for obstructive sleep apnoea.
“Nurses are at an increased risk for circadian rhythm sleep-wake disorders such as shift work disorder. There should be scheduling modifications to help alleviate the burden of shift work disorder among nurses,” said Christian. (IANS)
Sleep is one of the most important aspects of our daily routine. You need it to properly function at work, to operate your car safely, and to make coherent decisions. There are even signs alongside the road that state how drowsy driving is just as bad as drunk driving. So, not getting an ample amount of rest is detrimental to not only your life, but the safety of others as well.
Now, getting all the sleep we need to function well can be easier said than done sometimes. We can always say that we’re going to bed “early” tonight, but “early” somehow ends up being a little after midnight, and you have get back up at 5 o’clock in the morning to go to work.
This will then begin the seemingly never-ending cycle of being sluggish, and slightly unproductive, at work. That can then lead to yawning, laziness and grouchiness, and no one wants to be around Oscar the Grouch, especially when they’re having a good day.
If you are someone who struggles with getting a good night’s rest, but you really want to break that habit, then it will have to start with you. You will have to consciously make the effort to do better. To genuinely give yourself a shot at getting a good night’s rest, consider incorporating these habits into your daily routine.
Give Yourself a Bedtime
Bedtimes are not just for kids and senior citizens! They’re for anybody who needs sleep! Children typically are given bedtimes to get them into a proper sleeping routine that will have them refreshed and ready for school the next morning.
Why can’t you give yourself a bedtime that will leave you feeling refreshed and ready for work the next morning? The same principle applies. You can say that you’re going to bed by 9 p.m. all you want, but if you’re not actively making that effort, then your words are meaningless.
Actively making the effort to get to bed at a decent hour may require you to make some changes to your daily routine. If your goal is to go to bed by 9 p.m., then you may have to make dinner earlier than you normally would. You may invest in paper plates to cut down on dish washing time, or shower as soon as you get home, instead of waiting until later in the evening.
All of those are just examples of small things you can do to help get yourself in the bed at your desired bedtime. You don’t have to necessarily make those particular changes, but those are ways to actively put forth the effort to reach your bedtime goal.
You ever notice how kids go to sleep much faster after playing outside for a few hours? Well, it’s because they’ve been running around outside burning energy. That same logic applies to you when needing to get more rest. When you exercise, you’re burning off energy, which in turn, can lead you to a better quality of sleep.
Your exercise doesn’t have to be rigorous either. You just need to do enough exercise to get your heart rate up, but you also need to give it at least 30 minutes of consistent effort. Your initial intentions for exercising are to help you sleep better, but you also have the possibility of slimming down in the process, so overall, it’s a win-win for you!
Better Quality Bedding
The type of bedding you’re sleeping on can also play a huge factor in getting a good night’s rest. If you’re sleeping in bedding that slides off your mattress, or you easily get tangled up in, then it’s high time to get yourself some better quality bedding.
You want bedding that enhances your sleep, not detracts from it. You want pillows that are as plush as clouds and sheets that are soft to the touch. Anything that lacks those qualities might play a contributing role in your sleepless nights. Your bedding set may not have started out like that, but over time quality can start to fade, so you want to invest in good quality bedding that can withstand wear and tear..
Are you a people pleaser? Being someone who says yes, all the time, even when you should have said no, can bring about stress. Those that are familiar with stress, know that stress can have you up all night, worrying about things that are either left in your hands, or out of your control. What “yes people” don’t realize is that their stress is self-inflicted, and totally preventable. For example, if your boss asks if you can work overtime and you know you can’t, but say yes anyway, then you’ve contributed to your own stress, and by extension, lack of sleep. It’s okay to want to help people, and dedicate your time for certain things, but you have to help yourself too. Saying no, to give yourself a shot at rest, is a good start in the right direction.