Night shift woes. Please advise.

by sleepdeprivation sleepdeprivation (New) New

I have been working night shift for 1.5 years and never average more than 3 hours sleep during the day. It has taken a toll on my health. I can't remember when the last time I felt good. I am constantly looking for day shift work but there is none out there. Most places fill those postitions internally. Anyone else on night shift that has the answer please share your secret. Not sure how much more of this i can take.



83 Posts

Have you tried taking a sleeping pill after you get off work? So you can sleep. Darkened room? It's probably going to be hard to find a job until you reach 2 years.



58 Posts

A coworker if mine had a small walk in close and set he would make a pallet in his closet and sleep there. Lol a little far fetched, but he said it helped block out light and extra sound. I don't have any other advice. I work night shift but as soon as my head hits the pillow, I'm out cold.

i have darkened the room and we have a sound machine that i keep on rain. And yes I've tried every over the counter sleep aid available. Nothing works.

My husband is like that. He doesn't understand why I can't sleep because he can fall asleep at the drop of a hat. My brain says it's daytime so get up!

I've been working nights for about 6 years and adjusted well I actually sleep better during the day then at night. I don't know about your lifestyle habits. Do you smoke, eat poorly, drink to much caffine, or don't exercise? Those things can affect how you feel and how you sleep. My suggestion to you is to drink more water, avoid the caffine, take a multivitamin, and do some kind of exercising,and look at what you eating. Eat fruits high in vitamin C, it's good for you immune system and it sounds like u need. After trying that and you still can't adjust you should just got to different shift.

loriangel14, RN

Specializes in Acute Care, Rehab, Palliative. 6,923 Posts

Have you tried a prescription med? I use one occasionally and it really helps.Maybe try talking to your doctor.



138 Posts

I totally sympathize I did night shift for 5 years and the last year I could not sleep. I felt horrible all the time!! I finally left and took an 8 to5 Monday thru Friday job. I tried melatonin, it helped a little. White noise helped. Sorry I can't be more help, I feel your pain though!

turnforthenurse, MSN, NP

Specializes in ER, progressive care. Has 7 years experience. 3,364 Posts

I don't have a darkened room but instead just use an eyemask so it seems like it is dark. Keep the room cool, either run the AC or have a fan running. You sleep better when it's cooler.

Don't do anything stimulating before bed time - don't lie in bed on your phone or on your computer right before trying to fall asleep. If you're a coffee drinker, stop drinking it at a certain time at night - I try to cut off by 0100-0200 but if I am REALLY tired, I will take a few sips of coffee after those times...but that's it! Have you ever tried melatonin? I take that sometimes and it helps.

I usually have no problem sleeping during the day. It's my nights off that can be a problem. This past night I went to bed by 2145 and ended up being WIDE awake at 0030. I couldn't fall back asleep until around 0600 and and woke up again at 1030, but even that period of sleep wasn't very satisfying.

poppycat, ADN, BSN

Specializes in pediatrics; PICU; NICU. Has 44 years experience. 856 Posts

I've been working nights since 1975 & can not do day shift! It doesn't agree with me (much the same as night shift doesn't agree with other people). I don't have a dark room, either. I wear a sleep mask on which I put a few drops of lavender essential oil. I keep the ceiling fan above the bed on & sometimes run a fan beside the bed that blows directly on me. I take melatonin half an hour before I go to bed.Even with these measures the most I normally sleep is 4-5 hrs. Most days I'm also able to take about a 2 hour nap in the evening.Turnforthenurse: I have the same problem on my nights off. My husband & I are usually in bed by 2030 because he gets up very early for his job. I usually wake up again before 2300 & then I'm up at least 5 hours. I guess that's what happens from being on this shift for so many years!

Edited by poppycat
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