Night shift is killing me (BEDA 3)

I am a nurse, a night shift nurse. I have worked nights now for seven years. I love it. I love the crews I have worked with. I mostly love all the residents. I love the environment. You have to be a little more autonomous when you work nights because you don’t have as many people backing you up. I think that is one of the reasons I don’t freak out quite as much. Night shift is responsible for making me into the nurse I am today. I am a proud night shifter.

Night shift is killing me.

My body is falling apart. I am constantly exhausted. CONSTANTLY. I can barely wake up before 4 pm.  I have a terrible sleeping pattern, I can’t sleep through the night even on my days off. I have gained an enormous amount of weight because I eat horribly and at awful times. My body just isn’t doing well with night shift anymore.

I am at fault.  I chose nigth shift. I have insomnia so I didn’t sleep through the night anyway. I figured, since I am always up I might as well work nights. Initially, it worked out perfectly. I got paid shift differential to work when I was awake anyway. But I am older now. My 30’s don’t seem to like this night shift life anymore. I am dragging into work each shift and tired by 2 am.

I wonder if it’s time to leave the night life behind?

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2 thoughts on “Night shift is killing me (BEDA 3)

  1. My spouse and I worked nights (as nurses) for years. I quit nursing, but my spouse still works nights – for close to 30 years now! I think for night shift to work out long term you must keep a night shift routine even when you are not working. When not working, we’d still stay up til 2 am to 4am range, and get out of bed between 11 am to 1pm. When working several nights in a row (12 hr shift) we’d sleep all day – getting up in just enough time to get to work again. We are natural night owls, and also have other life circumstances (like no children) that give us this ability. Some people are not natural night owls, and some must revert to a day schedule when off work because they have kids or other life responsibilities. So I guess my point is, know yourself. Night shift can work long term, but for some it can not. But I think switching back and forth, working nights but reverting to a day schedule when off work, does lead to exhaustion. I think our bodies need some consistency. Just my 2 cents from a stranger. : )

    • I used to be a night owl which is why I chose night shift in the beginning. I don’t know what happens but as I have gotten older my body is trying to revert back to a “normal” schedule. I may have to either try dayshift (shudders) or take your advice and try and keep as much of a night schedule as possible.

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