How Night Shift Affects Our Health

By: Sneha A

So many people around the globe work in night shifts. For some, it is a choice they need to make to boost up their career, while for others, it is more of a financial necessity.

There are some more people who choose this lifestyle because, according to them, the working atmosphere is better during the night shifts, wherein the people are much more friendly.

As there is no management during these hours, the atmosphere is also relaxed when compared to day shifts.

Health Tips For Night Shift Working People

However, there is a bad part of working in night shifts too that people often choose to ignore, and that is how working in night shifts affects your health.

While people here only focus the comfort, career graph and money, what they choose to shut the eyes to is their very own health.

There are numerous evidences which conclude that working in night shifts can cause serious health conditions, even a heart attack.

It is something they cannot even imagine how working in a night shift can cause a heart attack. But, sadly, it is true, and one has to understand how continuously working in night shifts can take a toll on your health.

Here are some bits on how working in night shifts affects your health, have a look.

1. Disrupts The Sleep-Wake Cycle:

The human brain has a part which is known as the circadian clock. This part is basically responsible for our sleep-wake cycle and all our bodily functions like digestion, heart rate, temperature, etc, are all synced accordingly. Night shifts disrupt the circadian rhythm of the body and bring in hazardous affects.

2. Disturbs The Metabolic Rate:

Maintenance of the internal body temperature is disturbed with the imbalance in the circadian rhythm, resulting in lower levels of hormone Leptin that regulates the metabolism of the body. The disturbance in the metabolic rate can lead to problems like obesity and other cardiovascular diseases.

3. Can Cause Diabetes & Obesity:

Diabetes is one of the biggest risks associated with working in night shifts. Insulin activity in the body is highly affected and it is the reduced level of Leptin which is again to be blamed for upsetting the insulin and blood sugar levels as well. Hence, there is a very high risk of type 2 diabetes in people working in the night shifts.

4. Increased Risk Of Breast Cancer:

Some researches have also shown an increased risk of breast cancer in women who work in night shifts thrice or even less times in a week.

5. Can Cause Havoc In The Biological Clock:

People who work for night shifts often face the problem of sleep abnormalities, as their biological clock does not allow them to have a good quality of sleep during the day and nights are spent in their offices. This problem can further grow up to shift work sleep disorder (SWSD) causing either insomnia or excessive sleepiness.

6. Causes Depression & Anxiety:

Night shift workers also suffer from lower serotonin level, a feel good hormone. This also causes lack of sleep but with it comes other issues like mood swings, irritability, anxiety and even depression. Many studies have shown that there is a high risk of depression and other mood disorders in people working in night shifts.

7. Finally, It Causes Cardiovascular Diseases:

All the above-mentioned issues that are caused by night shifts negatively affect the cardiovascular system of a person, resulting in a heart attack. Obesity, diabetes, sleep deprivation or excessiveness all are usually inter-linked, ultimately putting a lot of stress on proper functioning of the heart.

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Read more about: night, health, wellness, heart diseases
Story first published: Sunday, May 8, 2016, 19:00 [IST]
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