How long did it take to get use to working nights?

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    Hello, I am thinking about taking a 7p-7a job. Problem is I have only worked 7-3, 3-11, and 7a-7p. I want to know how long did it take you to adjust to being awake overnight? How do you stay up and energized during this shift? This shift would work out best for my family situation so I am really considering it. Any advice is appreciated
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    I am naturally a nocturnal person and a late bird, so I adjusted to night shift immediately.

    I worked day shift (Monday through Friday from 6:00am to 2:00pm) and my body never became adjusted to awakening that early in the day. I wouldn't fully be awake and functioning until after 10:00am.

    I don't really need to do anything extra to stay awake during nights. I automatically seem to remain awake and alert. I typically awaken at 4:30pm, report to work at 6:00pm, clock out at about 6:30am, and fall asleep after around 9:00am.
    pers likes this.
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    I am sorry I can't answer your question, I am a new grad still looking for a job and I never worked night shifts before.
    How do you guys post your questions here, I am new to this website and I have a lot of questions to ask our expert nurses, but I don't seem to know how to post.
    any help will be really appreciated.
    thanks
  6. 1
    [B]My ; I oriented on 7a-7p for four months during my residency then had to switch over to 7p-7a. The first 1-2 mths were kinda rough. I didn't have a problem staying awake @ work but my on off days ALL I wanted to do was sleep!!!. It was very aggravating because I felt I couldn't get anything done outside of working. Nonetheless, I stuck w/ it (about 3-4 mths in total after starting) and things are much better. I work my days 3-on/ 4-off and that really helps too. My advice is to try to work your days 3 in a row from the very start. You may be tired @ first but you'll get the hang of it. Your body will have a more consistent schedule to get used to.
    Mrs. SnowStormRN likes this.
  7. 0
    Quote from RI Nurse
    I am sorry I can't answer your question, I am a new grad still looking for a job and I never worked night shifts before.
    How do you guys post your questions here, I am new to this website and I have a lot of questions to ask our expert nurses, but I don't seem to know how to post.
    any help will be really appreciated.
    thanks
    Hi. Click Nurses tab at the top, pick an area that will fit the thread you want to post, hit New Thread and go from there. GOOD LUCK in your studies!
  8. 1
    Ugh. Great question. I am doing 12 hr shift clinicals right now as a student, and let me tell you, even if I manage to sleep half the day to prepare myself, it is BRUTAL!! By the time 3am rolls around, I want to cry. I am also on a very quiet floor, nothing going on, which I think makes it worse. The other seasoned nurses don't seem to handle it much better, they struggle at times to stay awake as well.

    To be honest, it isn't normal to be up all night. It goes against the natural law of the universe! Staying busy helps, but it probably takes a long time to not feel like it is torture. And even then, it is probably, for most people, not an easy shift. ESPECIALLY with the 12 hour shift. 11 to 7 is easier.
    SqueakRN likes this.
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    I am also nocturnal, so night shift is easy. I find days to be unnatural, because for one thing, I hate having to force myself to go to bed early. If you are going to work nights successfully though, you need to sleep during the day. Some people try to do all sorts of things, then work at night. That's how you get burned out faster.
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    it took me 2years to get used to it (I cant say i am completely used to it et), well i guess it due to the fact that i only sleep 3hrs during the day because i could never sleep during the day.

    You need to know if you are a night person or day person
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    Like a couple of others, it was an easy adjustment for me. I spent a year on dayshift and never did get used to it. I couldn't fall asleep early enough and was far from my "best" (both in personality and function) for the first several hours of my shift.

    For those I've seen struggle with sleeping during the day, melatonin and herbal teas can help. Making the room very dark and developing a strict bedtime routine generally helps the most though. To stay awake at night, some swear by coffee, others by energy drinks but most of us are so busy you don't have much time to think about being tired though!
    Mrs. SnowStormRN likes this.
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    I'm one RN in LTC, so I'm too busy to be tired at night. There is a period from 0430 to 0500 where I do start to feel tired, but then I am ok again, since we start waking people up to wash them. I can't see myself ever wanting days, but it does depend on you. Some people are not cut out for nights. I don't need caffeine at night, either.


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