Regretting night shift

Posted

Hello, I am a “new grad” ICU nurse on night shift. I have been at my hospital for 3 years I was a pct, LPN, then RN. I am making this post because I started my new job in September on night shift and I am highly regretting it. I truly think I want to quit but I am in a residency so I don’t think quitting is an option until after a year. Yes I am on the list for days but on my unit we have 18 nurses on day a shift compared to 9 on night shift so I know it will be over a year until I can go to days. Sleeping is not a problem for me it’s the way I feel when I leave work, I honestly feel like I am developing depression… I dread going to work, and when I get there I am very grumpy compared to day shift. It also doesn’t help that I work on an oncology ICU which is also Very depressing. I just want to know if there is anyone that can relate with what I’m going through and can give some advice. 

newnursewhodiis

28 Posts

I think you should make a list to help identify what’s bothering you. The Unit? Not having enough day light? Vitamin d deficiency which is common for night shift workers? 

Florida

Specializes in critical care. Has 16 years experience. 3 Posts

First, its your approach to night shift! It's actually a great shift and a good unit. Take 5mg of melatonin in the car. Where your shades OUT of the hospital all the way to the house.  Go straight home. Instructions from my neurologists from me to you. I loved nights and I used to regret when the alarm went off, now its the same at 0500, again its all in the approach & attitude about work. Nights there's no administration, no family and other drama, staff can devote care to patients. Document heavily to increase acuity, I don't agree with decrease in staff because patient's do NOT sleep at night! Any degree of illness is depressing but we are here to help in time of illness recovery and pathway to healing. Florida

samurphy

46 Posts

On 11/30/2021 at 10:52 AM, newnursewhodiis said:

I think you should make a list to help identify what’s bothering you. The Unit? Not having enough day light? Vitamin d deficiency which is common for night shift workers? 

Thanks so much for your input. I think it is the unit and the fact that I went from working PRN on days to working full time on night shift when I really didn’t want to do night shift and the fact that I have to watch patients intensively during a time that I am usually asleep. I talked to my manager and he offered for me to go to day shift on another floor, but I don’t think it would be smart to leave so early I’m going to wait it out a 3 more months and see how I feel then, because in it will March will be 6 months. 

j91761

Specializes in Med Surg. Has 5 years experience. 3 Posts

  

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Psychnursehopeful, ASN, RN

Specializes in ICU. Has 1 years experience. 155 Posts

18 day and 9 on nights? What kind of ratios do you have at night? I'm guessing charge has two? Must have triples? I'd leave or ask for a substantial raise to compensate for the workload. 

newnursewhodiis

28 Posts

On 12/13/2021 at 12:32 AM, samurphy said:

Thanks so much for your input. I think it is the unit and the fact that I went from working PRN on days to working full time on night shift when I really didn’t want to do night shift and the fact that I have to watch patients intensively during a time that I am usually asleep. I talked to my manager and he offered for me to go to day shift on another floor, but I don’t think it would be smart to leave so early I’m going to wait it out a 3 more months and see how I feel then, because in it will March will be 6 months. 

ahhh... hmm, well I think that if you can switch to another floor (unit) and get days that you should just go for it since you have already identified not enjoying the unit. If you decide to stick it out maybe invest in some sleep glasses to wear when you get home to help with melatonin, maybe listen to some encouraging pod casts, and do some visual meditations before your shift- like identify what your short term pain for your long term gain is- this can be motivating and also serve as a reminder this is short term. 

subee, MSN, CRNA

Specializes in CRNA, Finally retired. Has 50 years experience. 3,503 Posts

19 hours ago, newnursewhodiis said:

ahhh... hmm, well I think that if you can switch to another floor (unit) and get days that you should just go for it since you have already identified not enjoying the unit. If you decide to stick it out maybe invest in some sleep glasses to wear when you get home to help with melatonin, maybe listen to some encouraging pod casts, and do some visual meditations before your shift- like identify what your short term pain for your long term gain is- this can be motivating and also serve as a reminder this is short term. 

There are multiple threads about adapting to night shift on AN.  Veterans have a lot of useful information and there us a learning curve to surviving.  A few people thrive on nights because of less hassles.  Use all the tips here and give it a few more months before quitting.  And there is always zolpidem in the end if nothing else works. You don't want to be unsafe because of lack of sleep.  Good luck.