What are the Dangers of Shift Work Disorder?
Shift workers are employed during non-regular business hours, making them more susceptible for workplace injuries. Most shift workers switch off between working during the day and working overnight, putting the functionality of their bodies at risk. The changing of shift times may induce shift work disorder, which causes fatigue during the daytime hours. This disorder can lead to serious accidents or injuries while working, as well as mistakes in judgement.
How Can I Protect Myself as a Shift Worker?
Some ways workers can combat fatigue include:
- Sleeping as much as possible: This may be hard for those who work at odd hours of the day, but it is very important to get at least six hours of sleep and to maintain a sleep schedule. Consistency is needed to keep your body healthy and to protect you from fatigue.
- Purchasing items that help you sleep: If you sleep during the day and work at night, invest in blackout curtains to keep light out. Ear plugs are also helpful to eliminate noise while you are sleeping. Fatigue is one of the worst problems that shift workers face and can lead to serious injuries or fatalities.
- Creating a false sense of daylight: If you work during the night, make sure you have enough light while working to create a sense of daylight. This will make you feel more awake and will help trick your body into thinking that you are working during the day rather than the middle of the night.
- Seeing a doctor: If you recently transitioned to shift work and are having a hard time sleeping due to your new schedule, a doctor may be able to help. Doctors can also help you with fatigue and concentration problems due to your new lifestyle.
- Driving safely after your shift: Shift workers are prone to getting into accidents after their shifts due to fatigue and lack of concentration. For those who travel home in the dark, make sure that you are prepared for your drive, and you are capable of making it home safely. If driving is difficult for you after a shift, consider using mass transit or setting up a carpool to eliminate car accidents.
- Staying healthy: Wellness issues tend to arise with shift workers due to their sedentary habits and interrupted sleep patterns. To combat these issues, try to incorporate fitness into your daily routine, stay on a regular sleep schedule, and eat healthy food to maintain a balanced diet. These steps will help increase your energy and lower your risk of developing chronic illnesses.
Shift workers face many challenges due to the nature of their jobs. Always remember to put your health and safety first to help reduce injuries and accidents from occurring while working or after your shift is complete. If you are injured because of another party’s negligence, such as extreme fatigue, you may be eligible for Workers’ Compensation benefits.
Bucks County Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at Freedman & Lorry, P.C. Fight for the Rights of Injured Workers
If you are a shift worker who was injured on the job, contact one of our Bucks County Workers’ Compensation lawyers at Freedman & Lorry, P.C. for legal representation. Our team works hard to ensure that our clients receive the proper compensation they deserve. Call us at 888-999-1962 or contact us online for a free consultation. Located in Philadelphia, Cherry Hill, New Jersey, and Pinehurst, North Carolina, we serve clients throughout Pennsylvania.