Nightshifters: What wakes you up while you are trying to sleep in this 9 to 5 world? - page 2

I have worked both shifts over the years. While I prefer the atmosphere on nights (NO SUITS!!!!!), I often find it difficult to get a good amount of sleep. Here's why: 1. No matter what time I... Read More

  1. by   live4today
    I didn't really get to sleep good during the day until the kids grew up and left the nest. When it was just me coming home after a night's work, I would darken the bedroom, turn on the box fan - there was something soothing about the sound of the fan that helped me to sleep, and I would turn off the ringer on the phone, put tape over the doorbell with a note saying "DO NOT DISTURB-SLEEPING LIKE A BABY" taped to the doorbell AND one on the door higher up in case someone says, "Oops, I didn't see the sign on the doorbell." WHATEVER!

    Noises that would wake me were construction being done in the apartment complex where I use to live, maintenance pounding on the plumbing or the roof in the building where I lived, lawnmowers and weedcutters, loud music being played by a neighbor, dogs barking, and so forth.

    NEVER will I work another nightshift as long as I live!
  2. by   thisnurse
    i dont have a lot of trouble sleeping during the day. i sleep with the tv on to drown out noises. my fiancee wont let ANYTHING or ANYONE wake me up and im thankful for that.
    my problem is FALLING asleep. sometimes i dont get to sleep until after noon. not a problem when i start at 11 but a big problem when i start at 7p.

    i find myself much more rested working daylight. the HOURS are better for humans i think, but the shift sucks. i dont mind the hectic pace but i hate the constant phone calls and trying to keep up with the doctors orders. i also hate that there are ppl so spoiled by my nightturn, being able to use the comp when i need it...being able to sit when i need to and i HATE HATE HATE waiting for the
  3. by   JWRN
    I worked nights for many years about 15..I could sleep all day until 5pm when it was time to get up and get ready for work..I had no problem sleeping during the day, some days the sun would be a problem, so I placed large beach towel over the blinds, that helped....The ringer was turned off on the phone if I new I was working that night. The phone did cause problems, that is why I started turning off the ringer...Made sure the my dog had been out and tee-tee'ed, and he would sleep all day until I would get up for work at 5p.....Then the last problem was construction of new houses in the neighborhood, that was solved with Xanax and then Meletonin.

    I miss nights, though it was just as hard as day shift, there is a different atomsphere during the nightshift. I have been on days for a while, now my current job I get to set my own hours so I am more 9-10a to 6-7p type worker, some times 8a to 5p.....I miss sleeping during the day, especially if it is thunderstorming and raining, that is the best time to sleep I think.....
  4. by   Tookie
    I did nights for 14 and half years - its been 2 and half years now that l stopped - still not sleeping properly - did lots of the methods others have mentioned to get to sleep - I would hate to go to bed cold would wait until by bed was WARM ENOUGH - Anyway i probably averaged 4 hours sleep most times - The kids were great they grew up used to me sleeping in the day as did their friends when they would come home from school -
    anyway what would wake me - lots of things did but the worst was
    Every good friday morning the CFA (our local volunteer community rescue/ fire service in the rural areas) would go around a collect for the childrens hopsital appeal every year they wok me with their ********* siren - a few eyars ago l had had enough - l got out of bed in my nighty yelled 'Thank you so muchfor successfully waking me up for 13 years running' - unbeknowst to me - but brings great joy to me familiy therre was a TV crew filming for the local TV - with me yelling loudly at them- (It would go silent then wouldnt it) Fortunately they did actually cut me out - but the family and the neighburs always remind on Good Friday -
  5. by   aus nurse
    That is so funny tookie....betcha family got a copy of the tape though!!!!!

    Night duty is my favourite shift. I never have any problem sleeping during the day, being a night owl it is my preferred sleeping time. I always get that second wind in the morning though and have to force myself to go to I can be at least half responsible when my son gets home after school.

    As an added benefit, on the times I am not actually working nights but am caught being still in my nightie at middday....I just say......OH night duty you know and they believe me!!!!hehehe (sssh don't tell anybody)
  6. by   nursedawn67
    I work 12 hour night shifts (6p-6a). I sleep approx 5 to 6 hours when I come home and have to work again that night. I use a fan, the phones ringer is shut off, and have the windows covered well so it is dark in the room. It takes some fool to come in the room after noon and move around in there to wake me up or a couple of well placed children outside the door. Otherwise I sleep the whole time.
  7. by   ziggyRn
    When I did nights I used to completely cover my windows with tin foil..makes the bedroom really dark and cuts out noise too.
  8. by   canoehead
    I second all of the above plus...I do not drink coffee, I drink loads and loads of water. I've gotten used to getting up and peeing and stumbling back to bed. Believe me, getting back to sleep takes practice and you will learn how to do it. I save my coffee for the nights when I'm up for 24h straight and still have to function, and it works VERY WELL for those times.

    I also wake up with a splitting headache if I do not rehydrate continuously.

    Hearing the noises outside makes me think I am glad to be home in my snug bed asleeep and not having to deal with all the daytime traffic, and construction and day to day problems, and I sleep better with a smile on my face. I know when I get up things will have settled down and all us nighters will be able to spend quality time on the things thatcan't be cleaned up in just a day. We make a real difference to each other and our patients.

    And I love driving home on Monday morning and seeing all those cranky faces going in to face a whole week- while I've got a stretch off to look forward to.
  9. by   LauraRN0501
    I am not a night person, have never been able to adjust to nights no matter how long I work them. BUT I love nights and the atmosphere and the people on nights.

    I don't sleep well during the day. When my son is not in school, I feel I need to be available to him if he needs something. And this year we homeschooled so you KNOW he is always here! LOL Even with my husband here, I still can't sleep well. I get up and down, wander around to see what is going on, watch TV, whatever. I think if I didn't have a child it might be different, I don't know.

    And Tookie, I was laughing hysterically at your story! Doesnt that just figure.

  10. by   DF-LPN
    Ive been working 3rd for almost ten yrs. I sleep with a fan on high plus a ceiling fan. I'm usually wide awake by the time I get home so I do all my running around and house work. I usually go to bed about 1 or 2pm and sleep until about 8-9 pm

  11. by   jules-RN
    I work nights, both 12's & 8's. But I also have a 2 year old. On the days I have to go in to work, I nap with her...usually from 1-4p. If I go in at 11p, I usually lay down again with her at 8 and sleep until 10p. Luckily I only live 10 minutes from work now. I'm home by 7:30. My mom watches my daughter so that I can sleep in the morning, and I'm usually out cold by 8 or 8:15. But then the bladder fairy calls and I have to get up and go around 11 or 11:30 and then I eat.

    I try not to work 2 in a row if possible. It's better for me and my daughter...she get's quite cranky if I work 2 in a row.
  12. by   mattsmom81
    I loved my nights the best, but I also liked to pick up some day helps to get to know the people/shift you follow and vice versa....

    Did the same as the rest of ya'll..white noise, dark room, beeper for emergency calls ONLY (Family and school) and phones off.

    I usually took a warm bath, 2 Benedryls and went right to bed for about 5-6 hours. As I got older, I found I felt better when I split my nights and slept normally on my nights off...worked better for me.

    I've always enjoyed the camaraderie at night better than the circus on days!

    Tookie, your story was hilarious....endlesly barking dogs make me want to do the EXACT same thing! LOL!
  13. by   Ted
    I love working nights. In healthcare, it's the only shift to work, in my opinion.

    What wakes me up during the day when I try to sleep? Well:

    1) The phone when the ringers are not turned off.
    2) The door bell.
    3) My 135 pound dog, Bubbles, when she barks, snores, breaths, burps, passes gas. . .
    4) Too much coffee the night before.
    5) Music in my head. This has always been a problem. Whenever I'm working on any music project, the melodies and harmonies reverberate endlessly through my head. (For this, I really love and hate music!)

    Still, though, I manage to get a total of about 4 to 6 hours a sleep when I work nights. Sleep is done is shifts. About 2 to 4 hours once I get home and then another 2 hours before going to work.

    To all of you night nurses. . . . you're a special bunch of people and don't you forget it!!!

    Happy Nursing Week, Folks!