12 hour shifts - page 2

How do you survive a 12 hour shift? :eek: Is there some advice you would give to making it easier for someone who has never done 12 hour shift?... Read More

  1. by   Whisper
    three is the most long days I can do in a row, and the drive back form the third shift I usually drive back with the windows down and my music turned up, just as an extra precaution.

    I have been on a few ward where they do 'hand backs' at 15hr or 16hr.

    It is nice to have the illusion, even if you are forgetting what your home looks like!
  2. by   catz
    i found that working 11 (only paid for 10 as susposed to get total 1 hour of breaks bt rarely did) hour shifts was better in the long run. yes the last one i was usu just functioning but that was the case after 3 or 4 8 hour shifts too. especialy when my 8 hour shifts frequently turned into 10 hour shifts due to understafing n noone to take over blah blah. i was ending up doing 5 10-12 hour shifts which imo meant my nursing care suffered more.

    as for time with families, yep is only on days of but is more quality time than was before imo.


    and yep i burnt out, not from the longer shifts, but from the extra 8 hour shifts i was doing on 2 of my 3 days off to make ends meet.
    Last edit by catz on Oct 4, '03
  3. by   british bird
    I work 14 hour shifts too - think that they're fab - 4 days off, less time spent in the car travelling to work, always able to find a parking space at 0730 (before the admin staff get in!). working in itu, the day flies by. once you get past that period of blues at 3pm, when the early staff leave, the rest of the evening speeds by! only downside is that you can never get off early if the opportunity arises.
  4. by   indie
    Many US RNs who work 12 hours shifts only work three per week and are paid as if they had worked a 40 hr. week.

    I voted for 12 hour shifts in my 30s, thought about it, but still voted for them in my 40s, but now think they are too long for me to remain effective.
  5. by   Whisper
    I just finished a looooooooooong shiftt.. I started at 7.30 this am, and finished at just before 2300... I was meant to finish at 2030, but that plan went out the window... I am too tired to even figure out how many hours I worked, However it will make my next twelve hour shift feel like a walk through

    Whisper
  6. by   amyslater
    AH, to twelve or not to twelve. If this schedule is going to suit you , go for it. I did not see you age in your post but all of teh nurses I know can,do, and will work twelves. I enjoy them if there are no more than three in a row. anymore than that and I am a danger to everyone, especially those I share the road with on my way home. I feel that we will all be working nothing but twelves or sixteens before it is all over with because we are no longer viewed as worthwhile. We are an expense to our employers and will continue to be written off as just that until somthing drastic happens.
  7. by   bulletproofbarb
    I have done two now, 7am till 930pm. I don't mind it. The first one, I was fine. That was a couple of weeks ago now. The one I just did on Sunday really knocked me, I have spent most of Monday sleeping. This is rare for someone who never sleeps more than 5 hours in a row. It's wednesday now and I am still tired. I am wondering if it's just not the change of weather or something. I survived the first one with no problems.
  8. by   BarbPick
    I found this great link on how to survive 12 hour night shifts. It has nice music on it as well.
    http://www.enw.org/NightShift.htm
  9. by   bulletproofbarb
    I don't do night shift ever. I have a medical excemption. I might fall asleep during the day if I listen to that!
  10. by   Karen30
    I worked 14 hour shifts, (long days) for about 7 years. I always said I would NEVER EVER go on 8 hour shifts, that they weren't for me.

    But looking back now, they were no good for my health. Even my manager used to say I'd be better on 8 hour shifts...but I came up with all the excuses not to go on 8 hour shifts, like 4 days off, less travelling time, better continuity for patients, etc. the list could go on.

    Anyway, after a long discussion with my manager I compromised and said I would give the 8 hours shifts a go for a month. What a difference!!!!

    Maybe at the time I didn't realise it but I was constantly tired on long days, now I feel less tired than I used to, I don't feel like I spend my whole life at work, I see the sun, (occasionally!!), and I actually feel like I have more time off, even though I only get two days off a week, there is still plenty of time before or after a shift which makes it feel like you have more time off.

    Reflecting back now I used to come to-wards the end of a long day and just be glad the day was nearly over, not really concentrating, (not good really). Now I enjoy my work again and concentrate better to.

    Would I go back on long days? Not likely I enjoy my eight hour shifts now!!!

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