Jump to content

Days or Nights

Posted

I am graduating in May with my RN. I am excited to start a new job, but can't decide between days or nights. For those of you who have worked both, could you give me pros and cons of each of them. I think I am leaning towards nights, but with children, I am not sure it will be the best fit. Any input will be helpful.

Thanks!

inchii

Specializes in Progressive Care Unit. Has 4 years experience.

Days:

Pros:

1. Normal sleeping pattern

2. More adequately staffed (some hospital have different nurse/patient ratio for RNS and CNAs for days and nights)

3. More resources (you have the Admit nurse, SWAT nurse, IV nurse, wound nurse, MDs, case manager, social worker, PT, OT, etc.)

4. See number 1.

Cons:

1. Most hospital activities happen during days (procedures, Doctors' rounds-which include new orders, Discharges, etc)

2. You also have to deal with patients' relatives (not that it's a bad thing, but some of them can give you a hard time)

Nights: (Pretty much the opposite of days)

Pros:

1. Night shift differential pay

2. Less procedures are done at night

Cons:

1. Messed up sleeping pattern (very important if you have family/kids)

2. Less staff resources.

3. You need to call or sometimes wake up physicians to get an order. You cannot really address all patient problems unless it's urgent.

4. Depending on the hospital, some routines are done during nights --IV tubing change, IV site change, Routine lab draws (usually done early AM. Some patients are nurse draws. You also need to address abnormal lab results), chart audit, central line dressing change, foley catheter change, etc

Can I just throw out that you might not have the option to choose? I was offered rotating days/nights and jumped on it. As a new nurse we need to take our lumps with gratitude, which very likely means nights/weekends/holidays.

LeggyNurse, ASN

Has 7 years experience.

I am graduating in May with my RN. I am excited to start a new job, but can't decide between days or nights. For those of you who have worked both, could you give me pros and cons of each of them. I think I am leaning towards nights, but with children, I am not sure it will be the best fit. Any input will be helpful.

Thanks!

When I accepted my first Nursing position, I chose nights. That helped me to get into a good routine and get my feet wet. Nights gives you a slower pace that helps you get a good routine going and more learning opportunities where you can actually take in everything that's going on.

After 9 months of working nights at 1 facility, when I moved to my next location, I chose days on a busy med-surg floor. I feel that working nights really helped me to jump into day shift. It still took some getting used to but I didn't feel like I was going in totally naked.

RunBabyRN

Specializes in L&D, infusion, urology. Has 2 years experience.

Can I just throw out that you might not have the option to choose? I was offered rotating days/nights and jumped on it. As a new nurse we need to take our lumps with gratitude, which very likely means nights/weekends/holidays.

I was going to say something similar- I'd take the job I'm offered. With the market the way it is, you may not have much choice.

Most new grads start on nights because it's harder to fill and it's a slower shift. It is nice not having so many doctors around all the time, management, and guests, but I'm in mother/baby, so it's a 24/7 kind of place, so all of that happens round the clock. The extra pay differential is nice, too.

I was talking about this with my preceptor, because I'm more of a morning person, precepting on PMs, and likely going to be working NOC shift. I'm also a distance runner and triathlete, so I'm trying to navigate my sleep, training, family time, etc. She said to sleep when you get home while the kids are at school (assuming yours are school-age), wake up when they get home/pick them up, hang out for the afternoon, do the evening routine, take an evening nap, and go in. I'll be fitting in workouts somewhere in there before I head in.

Whatever you end up doing, you'll make it work. :)

Ruby Vee, BSN

Specializes in CCU, SICU, CVSICU, Precepting & Teaching. Has 40 years experience.

Nights seems a good fit for someone with school-age kids. Sleep when you get home from work, wake up when the kids come home from school and spend a bit of time with them before going back to work.

Bear in mind that you'll likely end up on nights or with a rotating schedule, though.

Katie71275

Specializes in L&D. Has 2 years experience.

Nights here and I have 4 children, 3 are school age, and 1 is in prek. I sleep while they are in school, get up at 4 when the bus drops them off, and leave for work around 6p. I work 3-4 days a week, so this leaves me with 3-4 days of not having to be at work. The only thing about nights is that depending on how they do your days off (are they consecutive days are all jumbled around), you will have to figure out what to do when you are off...maintain your schedule of sleep during the day, stay up at night? Or try to do a normal schedule? If I have several days off in a row, I do go back to a normal daytime schedule...It's honestly not bad I don't think.