Jump to content

New job working nights in Home Health - looking for advice in setting up schedule

Posted

I just got my first job as an RN. It is all overnights, including many 12 hour shifts. I will rotate 3 nights one week, 4 the next, averaging about 30 hours a week. I start training in a couple of days, from 2300 to 0700.

I am wondering if anyone can give me advice on how to set up a new sleep schedule? There are probably a lot of you out there that are veterans at working night shifts that could help me out! ;) Is it best to sleep as soon as I get home, or later in the day before I go back? On my days off, can I go back to a normal schedule? I heard about sleeping in timed sleep cycles - has anyone else tried that?

I am worried about falling asleep at work - I've never worked nights before. Since it is in a home, there won't be anyone else to talk to to help me stay awake. Any advice on how to stay awake in a quiet household will be appreciated.

Archerlpvn, LPN, LVN

Specializes in Home health, Addictions, Detox, Psych and clinics.. Has 8 years experience.

I think you're referring private duty nursing..

brillohead, ADN, RN

Specializes in Cardio-Pulmonary; Med-Surg; Private Duty. Has 5 years experience.

Private Duty Nursing has its own forum: Private Duty Nursing

There are also about 842,000 different threads about working night shift on the General Nursing forum. Most people find what is easiest is to just switch completely over to a nights=awake / days=asleep existence.

It depends on what works best for you and your situation..... some people need to be awake during the daytime on their days off due to family obligations, others don't.

I just got my first job as an RN. It is all overnights, including many 12 hour shifts. I will rotate 3 nights one week, 4 the next, averaging about 30 hours a week. I start training in a couple of days, from 2300 to 0700.

I am wondering if anyone can give me advice on how to set up a new sleep schedule? There are probably a lot of you out there that are veterans at working night shifts that could help me out! ;) Is it best to sleep as soon as I get home, or later in the day before I go back? On my days off, can I go back to a normal schedule? I heard about sleeping in timed sleep cycles - has anyone else tried that?

I am worried about falling asleep at work - I've never worked nights before. Since it is in a home, there won't be anyone else to talk to to help me stay awake. Any advice on how to stay awake in a quiet household will be appreciated.

I have a hard time with this and have been working nights for over a year. It's especially hard not having coworkers that's what I miss the most.. My advice is to set your phone on do not disturb when you get home and keep it away from you. Also eat after work so you don't wake up midsleep because you are hunggry. Home health shifts can get boring at times since there is only one patient. Maybe take a magazine, book, or something to entertain yourself with.

Esme12, ASN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Critical Care, ED, Cath lab, CTPAC,Trauma. Has 40 years experience.

duplicate threads merged as per the TOS

NyteshiftLVN

Specializes in Lvn to RN, new grad med/surg. Has 7 years experience.

Do which ever works for you. I usually prefer to go home and go straight to sleep to be awake with my kiddos in the afternoon (after school) and early evening and even tuck them in before I go to work. But for certain things like appts, or special occasions like going out to breakfast on Father's day or something I'll stay awake and sleep later on. That's the beauty of working nights. On your days off I would say it depends on you. If you don't find it hard switching back and forth go for it. I've done both.

SDALPN

Specializes in Peds(PICU, NICU float), PDN, ICU.

New grads have no business in PDN. You are risking your license. Next, doing nights is worse because you have no clue what goes on during the day shift to learn skills you need for night shift. You can't learn how things work in PDN by doing night shift. Night shift is simple...sleep in the day, work at night...stay on that schedule even on nights off and you will adjust. If you fall asleep, don't worry because the families having cameras that are sometimes hidden and they will be quick to report you to the agency or BON and you will be rudely awakened by the family and told to get out. Finding a job after that will be tough. If you need people to talk to, this job isn't for you. You work alone in PDN. Good luck.

JustBeachyNurse, RN

Specializes in Complex pediatrics turned LTC/subacute geriatrics. Has 10 years experience.

I read but very few of the overnight cases left me with little to do. The kiddos that have overnight nursing are complex and require continuous assessment and monitoring. Overnight feeds, meds, pulse ox with overnight neb treatments at times. Im surprised an agency hired a new grad for overnights. (But on the same token not surprised as some agencies don't care about your license they just want a warm body). Read nursing journals. Read the chart & 485. Read about the patients condition. Perform the skills outlined in the 485. Perhaps orient to day shift to learn more about the patient ( if they have day hours)

Parents are quick to tell of nurses they fired for catching them asleep. Complained to agency and BoN--nurse list her job at least not sure of BoN action

Thank you - I wasn't sure how to delete one of them...

I started in pdn as a new grad. It is possible but you need to be on your toes. Take as much training as possible. Take any class offered. Read about all of your patients diseases and disorders. Read about any med or treatment you encounter. Don't be shy or afraid to ask your manager questions.

On overnights I read, organize, clean syringes and equipment, I watch movies on my laptop. YouTube has videos of nurses doing skills like changing Mic-keys.

Good luck.