Shift workers are more prone to short sleep and a range of sleep disorders, a large Belgian study finds. The problem was worse among night shift workers, about half of whom sleep 6 hours or less a night and have at least one sleep disorder.
- Shift work — which generally entails working and sleeping out of phase with the endogenous, circadian sleep–wake cycle — can lower sleep quantity and quality, but less is known about its relation to sleep disorders.
- Researchers used questionnaires to evaluate sleep duration and sleep disorders within a broad range of shift work schedules (regular day, early morning, evening, night, and rotating shift).
- Participants included 37,662 adult Belgian workers recruited through a Belgium newspaper.
- Compared with regular day work, all shift work schedules were associated with adverse sleep effects, with night shift work having the greatest negative impact on sleep.
- 50% of night shift workers reported short sleep (6 hours or less per night) compared with 26% of day workers.
- 51% of night workers screened positive for at least one sleep disorder, and 26% screened positive for two or more sleep disorders, including insomnia, sleep-related breathing disorders, and sleep-related movement disorders.
- The harmful effects of shift work on sleep were most prominent in young adults with lower education.
“Regular assessment of sleep quality and quantity and screening for disordered sleep in those working shifts might be crucial to timely treat sleep disorders and thereby preventing persistent sleep disturbances and their adverse effects on physical and mental health and work performance,” the authors wrote.
The study, with the first author Gretha Boersma, PhD, with Forensic Psychiatric Hospital, GGZ Drenthe Mental Health Institute, Assen, the Netherlands, was published online on December 7 in Frontiers in Psychiatry.
Participants were recruited via a newspaper advertisement, which could introduce selection bias. Individuals with sleep problems may be more inclined to participate in a study focused on sleep than good sleepers, and thus, people with sleep disturbances may be overrepresented. While the sleep disorder questionnaire used in the study has good clinical validity, a questionnaire can only provide an estimate.
The study had no specific funding, and the authors report no conflicts of interest.
Source link : https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/shift-workers-prone-plethora-sleep-disorders-2023a1000vjo?src=rss
Publish date : 2023-12-15 16:04:22
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