Why 12 hr. shifts??? - page 4

I would like to return to working in a hospital setting but what I've noticed about most job opportunities is that they are always for 12 hour shifts. After having already worked 12 hrs before on... Read More

  1. by   Dplear
    Balancing checkbooks???? that means you would have to have money to to do that....it must be the side job at Taco John with your son, since we know nurses do not make enough money to need to balance a checkbook with zero dollars in our accounts
  2. by   Jenny P
    Hey, you're the guy who makes the big bucks! And as far as balancing the checkbook, I always seem to add instead of subracting any checks I've spent if I try to do it after my 12 hour shifts!

    As far as the Taco John's job, I never went through with it since my hospital didn't go on strike. I just try not to spend money (although both my daughter and hubby do more than enough of that!).
    BTW, since my Hubby works days and I work nights, about the only time my bed ever gets made is on laundry day-- and my excuse is that with one or the other of us always sleeping; the bed needs to air out! And I end up doing the laundry, housework, etc; so no one argues that point with me.
  3. by   Goofball
    12 hour dayshifts for me aren't so bad most days, once you get used to them (takes about 6 months).
    It's nice not to have to be responsible for cooking dinner 3 days out of the week. It's also a relief to have a quiet house all to myself on days off during the week. And less traffic if I go out doing errands. The key for me not getting to tired from the shifts is, never do more than 2 days in a row.
    The worst part of working 12 hours is that I don't sleep well (or at all sometimes) because after rushing around at work like a maniac for 12 hours, I can't relax, even if I do fall asleep I usually dream I'm working all night. Splitting the shifts up helps a bit.
  4. by   Goofball
    I forgot to mention the biggest advantage of 12-hour shifts: we only have to work one weekend a month. The 8-hour people have to work every other weekend.
  5. by   Josefin
    Here in Sweden we have in general 3 shifts. 07.00-16.00, 12.30-21.00 and 21.00-07.00 with some local variation. It`s quite good, it means that for example in afternoons (12.00-16.00) staffing is usually good, since both morning and eavningshift are on duty. The bad thing is that you ofcourse have to work more days with this system, 5 of 7. I don`t know which system is the best, personally I think I would prefer 12 hour shifts for myself, and get 4 days off instead. I don`t know, maybe that system is too tough in the long run, but at least for now it would be good for me!
  6. by   CEN35
    my personal experience is this: 5 years ago......12 hour shifts were great. i worked 3p-3a quite a bit. it was not always crazy in our er, and we had lulls, and time to re-coop a bit. i have worked 8 hour shifts the past three years..........because of kids. however, we are always packed, always busy, constantly running.....and 8 hours tears me up. from others point of view at work, this is what i see. i do the scheduling, and am a manager. people all want 12 hour shifts......they claim they only want to be at work 3 days a week instead of 4 or 5. a few pick up extra time for o/t........and don't really like too, if it causes them to be there 5 or 6 days a week. mostly worker preference..............but we have all kinds of screwy shifts in the ed sooooooo???????????
  7. by   NurseTami
    I started doing 12 hr shifts (days7a-7p) while I was an LPN finishing up on my RN. I loved it!! I went to hospital and now work 12 hr nights 7p-7a. I still love it!! I have 3-4 days off per week, we self schedule so we work two day- three day stretches, then the same off. I come home, sleep 6 hrs if I have to work later, 2-3 if not. I spend a lot less time sleeping than I did when I worked days.
    I just hope this is not a honeymoon!! LOL, I have only been doing this for a few weeks.!!!!!
  8. by   sugoud
    HI, I work three 12's fri, sat, sun nocs every weekend. I love it when I come home on Mon at 7a and not have to go back until Fri at 7p.

    I just recently went to this shift, I used to be management in LTC, 40+ weeks days, salaried.

    I sleep 5-6 hours during the days I work still leaving me with about 4 hours with my family.

    I am so glad I made this move, it gave me back my life!
  9. by   lynnern
    i will miss my 12 hour shifts after i graduate in december with my arnp - i will hopefully find a job to suit me! working 12 hours leaves me alot of time to develop my own schedule for school, etc.
  10. by   Ted
    Been doing 12 hour 7p-7a shifts for about two months. Get paid for 40 hours worth of work for doing 36 hours! This is cool, I guess.

    Still though . . . I've been working the night shift (11-7) for years, and I find myself missing them! It's hard going to work at 7pm. Even though I only work three scheduled 12's/week, during the days (nights) I work the 12 hour shifts, it's nothing but sleep, eat, s**t and work. . . this is not fun!!! Do enjoy having four days off/week, though!!!

    Still haven't decided if I'll keep doing 12 hour shifts. I guess I'll give them a couple of more months.

    Ted Fiebke
  11. by   nightowl216
    I have done 12 hour shifts for 11 years and I do not like them at all. I put up with the horrible hours becuase I really enjoyed the area I was working (peds cardithoracic surgical ICU) but at age 47 I have hit my limit. I just can't do it any more.
    Night shift was slightly more tolerble than days but made it impossible to have a life outside of work or do anything in the day time without severe sleep deprivation. And trying to switch from sleeping days to sleeping nights every few days may be ok when you are 20 something but I can't do it any more.

    Day shift was totally exhausting and draining, no time to even sit down and catch your breath for the whole 12 and a half to 13 hours. and then floats or registry replacements were coming late and we never got out on time, plus I have a long commute. Getting up at 4 am and getting home at 9 pm is not my idea of an acceptable work schedule.

    I was so tired all the time that I needed 2-3 days to recover and catch up on sleep for every shift worked and had no life outside of work and sleep. Those 2 extra days off were worthless to me because I spent them catching up on sleep. Plus I had several recurrences of clinical depression during that time and my doctor kept recomending I find work with better hours.

    Well I am trying now and not having much luck, been out of work 7 weeks, No hospital within a one hpour commute of my home has anything but 12 hour shifts in peds, PICU or NICU.

    It looks like I am going to be forced to change specialties to something I know I will not like just to get an 8 hour shift.
    But at least I will be able to sleep regular hours and have some time to exercise, take better care of myself and do errands the same day as I work and actually have 2 full days off when I feel rested. That never happened when I was working 3 and 4 twelves a week, I rarely had more than 2 or 3 off in a row and I never felt rested.

    Another one of my pet peves was the frequency with which people were alowed to do 24 hour shifts. There is no way they were alert enough to take care of critically ill infants, and as team leader I felt reponsible for making sure that the patient wasn't neglected. I would refuse to allow any nurse to take care of me or my family beyond a 12 hour stretch, it's just not safe. The risk of mistakes is too high. But my former nurse manager didn't even want to hear my concerns. "Just be happy you got staffed" was all they would ever say.

    The nurses doing the 24 hour shifts reminded me so much of trying to get the car keys away from a drunk driver, kept insisting they were "fine" when it was obvious they were not.

    All you people who "love" 12 hour shifts...check back in about 20 years and see if you're still so crazy about them. I'd be willing to bet that most of you are under 40.
  12. by   soundsLikesirens
    I worked a year doing 7pm to 7am shifts on a very busy, understaffed med/surg floor: no more twelves.

    If you work a twelve-hour shift through the night (like 7p-7a), it takes you the entire next day to get rested up and even then, you feel like crap -

    I honestly don't know how I did it for a year!

    We were frequently scheduled for 3 12-hour shifts in a row. There's really no point in going home; you may as well stay at the hospital and go to sleep in an empty bed, because all you do is work, go home and sleep, then get up and come back to work.

    I finally had my fill after a year, and went PRN.

    No way will I ever do another twelve.
    The other night, I was scheduled for eight and they called and offered me DOUBLE-TIME to come in four hours early, and do a twelve. I did, but it wasn't worth it............I felt like crap the next day.

    Doing eight (11pm-7am) is a breeze. I am not tired the next day and it doesn't totally disrupt my sleep schedule.

    The last four hours of a twelve hour shift; I am virtually brain dead and my body is so worn out that I can barely function - forget about a good report..........I can barely remember what happened......the beginning of the shift seems like soooooooooo long ago. I do not get nearly as tired from doing an eight hour shift, and I know I am providing safe, quality care - I can't guarantee that with a twelve. Sometimes, people even do doubles......I don't know how.

    I'll never work twelve hour shifts again.