Staying awake all night for work, studies, sleepovers, or night-shift assignments can be tough on anybody. I occassionally work with a young 30's agency nurse who does 7, 12 hour night shifts a week so his wife can stay home with their baby daughter. If you are one of these people who are being asked to work the night shift, back-to-backs or third shift hours for the first time, you might be struggling to get through it while maintaining your high standard of performance. Night shifts are daunting for a number of reasons. By planning for adequate rest after every night shift, you can avoid some serious complications of chronic sleep deprivation, such as high blood pressure, cardiac disease, and depression. Among them: Make daytime sleep your #1 priority. Exercise in quick bursts to stay awake during night shifts. If you are someone who relies on caffeine to stay awake during your shift, be sure to stay away from energy drinks that are loaded with sugar and large amounts of caffeine. Staying awake on night shift can be difficult, but it’s not impossible. Either way, you can pull off an all-nighter with a few successful and simple tricks. While a slow day is often a welcome break for a rush, it can make it more difficult to stay awake and alert. Light Exposure. 16. Try taking a 90-minute nap before heading into work. Regulate your sleeping pattern to coincide with after-work down time, says night nurse Tom Trimble. Many shift workers are trying to sleep during the day and stay awake at night to work, leading to complaints of trouble sleeping and staying alert on the job. When You Have No Choice. It also makes sure you are awake and alert before the start of a shift (Which is a good thing). It's important to snack a little during your night shift, but don't use food as a distraction to stay awake. Anyone who works night shift knows how hard it can be to focus and stay awake. When your shift is over, take another short 15-minute nap before driving home to help re-energize your body and mind, making the commute safer. Napping is also helpful for night shift workers as it can improve alertness while on the job. I've worked shift work which includes 12 hr nights for 17 years and I never sleep even though I have plenty of opportunities to do so. The night shift, or third shift work is a big part of many industries. Getting quality sleep is important in order to stay alert, react quickly, and get home safely. Manage Yourself. Becoming self-employed means you choose when and where you work, and can lead to higher career satisfaction and a better balanced life. Night shifts are notoriously slower than day shifts in all different lines of work. For me its simple. I used to work on a 8 hour rotating shift at a major wine bottling facility in my area, operating a bottle depalletising machine. The above tips are just a fraction of the ways to help you stay awake during a long night shift. Tiredness at work is common whether you work part time or full time, day shift or night shift. Over time these employees may develop shift work disorder , a condition characterized by insomnia symptoms when they attempt to sleep and excessive tiredness while they are at work. Try our 12 tips. These are the exact strategies we work with our night-shift clients in our 1-on-1 Coaching Program! Tips on staying awake during the night shift. Workout routines for a 12 hour or night shift. Unfortunately, as a junior doctor, these are among the many things that you have to get used to. Get up at your normal time. Typically, the bulk of busy hours is during the day time. With so much demand for nurses, doctors, officers and store clerks, they are being asked to work night shifts, overtime and more strenuous work during regular hours. Listen to Music. Overall, I am grateful to be able to work nights. If you work the night shift or rotating shifts, ... doctors can prescribe medications to help people stay alert when they need to be awake and help shift workers fall asleep. Listening to music can be a great way to keep the mind awake. The night before stay up a little later than normal. If you have to stay awake for one night or adjust to a new night shift at work, these basic techniques will let you know how to stay awake all night long: I would see the night nurses when I started my shift at 7:00 AM and they all looked exhausted! In addition to napping at work, consuming a moderate amount of caffeine, and following a balanced diet, other tips for how to stay awake for a night shift include: Keep your workstation brightly lit : Your circadian rhythms are based on natural cycles of light and darkness; the release of certain hormones help you feel alert during the day and sleepy after the sun goes down. 1. Hang out with co-workers or friends that work nighttime jobs. 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