Struggling to sleep after working a night shift? Read this handy guide to avoid Shift Work Sleep Disorder, a common side effect of working shift patterns.
Getting a good sleep when working shift patterns can often prove difficult. If it isn’t the kids or the missus waking you up, it’s the postman or a car alarm going off down the street.
Added to all of that is the stress that changing your sleeping and eating patterns has on your body.
With cases of shift work sleep disorder on the rise, we’ve compiled some of our top tips on how to keep your body and mind well rested.
Don’t skip your meals and eat the right foods at the right times.
It can be hard to eat at 12 pm or 5 am so this can cause problems with your health.
Research shows that delaying meals or having meals at irregular times can cause problems with your body and mind including glucose and bowel problems.
This is due to the changes in the metabolic time tissues yet not the brain clock so it can be easy to let blood sugar levels drop as well as your energy levels.
So it is important to plan ahead and prepare meals for the week ahead and making sure you eat at the right times and staying healthy by including high amount of energy foods like brown rice, chicken and green veg this will keep your energy levels up and help you stay healthy and alert not only why on shift but help you sleep well after the shift has finished.
Take all allowed breaks
Ensure you don’t skip breaks and the food as the breaks are vitally needed from the body and brain to recharge.
This is highly important especially on the night shifts and early morning shifts. Plan the snacks and meals for each break or drinks to keep you alert and healthy throughout the shift.
Enjoy your downtime
It is important if you work shifts over the 7 days a week that you fit time in for you and the family’s social life.
It is medically proven that stressing about the little time you get for you can stress you out and is not good for your mental health.
Make sure you eat well and enjoy the moment’s together fun and stress free. Spend as much time with friends and family to make the shift patterns a lot easier.
Limit caffeine intake during work hours
We wouldn’t begrudge you a coffee early on in your shift, but try to limit your caffeine intake, especially during the second half of your shift.
The last thing you want is to get home and not be able to sleep because your still high on caffeine!
How to get to sleep and wind down after a difficult shift
While you work try to train your body and brain and make sure after your meals and breaks that the body and mind is ready to relax and recharge.
After night shifts don’t try and stay awake as good sleep is vital. a darkened room with lined curtains can help you as well as not drinking any coffee or energy drinks towards the energy shift to get you through.
A tea or water will do more good without you losing out on sleep.
If possible turn any phones off as this can keep you awake and cause you to get into a irritable state of mind when you need to get up for shift.
This can have a long term effect on the family life as well your physical state of mind and body.
Make sure your mattress is giving you the correct support
It is very important that your mattress is giving you correct support and comfort to enable the best sleep in between the shifts so check your bed and make sure that there is no dips or you’re not tossing and turning throughout the night.
Sometimes it can be easy to just put up with the mattress for many months.
However, this is clinically proven to cause problems internally and to the brain, as lack of sleep is proven to make you less alert and more fatigued.
There are many new mattress combinations and support systems to help you.
Make sure you have the correct spring support in your mattress.
Pocket spring mattresses are house in their own fabric and independent to your movement and body. the design of the spring allows them to move when you do which gets in to the areas that need the most support like the lower back neck and legs.
If you prefer a firmer mattress then maybe a ortho spring is best as this is a linked wirer spring with rod edge support.
The best combination in the market is the pocket spring with a foam or natural filling support.
Wool and natural fillings are becoming popular again and are replacing foam mattresses as the bestselling mattresses, with many great reviews.
The foam options are memory foam or latex with both offering you a great level of posture support and relief.
Choose natural latex like Talalay or a top-rated foam mattress like the Sleepshaper Foam Mattress.
Or why not go for one of our Mammoth Mattresses, that are clinically proven to enable a longer better sleep each night.
Mammoth Mattresses are recommended by top elite athletes as well as the RAF and the chiropractors association.
It’s also important to make sure the base of the bed is new with the mattress as this can make the new mattress lose its correct support system and lose its life time support.