Shift work sleep disorder (SWSD) occurs when you cannot regulate your sleep and wake times because of your work schedule. Having a shift work sleep disorder can be a very serious problem. It can interfere with your work and your personal life. You might experience reduced alertness, poor work performance, fatigue, headaches, and gastrointestinal problems. It can also lead to an increased risk of accidents while working or driving. Shift work sleep disorder can be a tough thing to deal with. But there are ways to get the relief you need.
Symptoms and Diagnosis
Shift work sleep disorder symptoms include sleepiness during the day and insomnia during the night. This is a form of circadian rhythm disorder, in which the body's natural sleep cycle and waking cycles are interrupted.
Symptoms include a reduction in total sleep time, and insomnia. These symptoms can interfere with your daily life and with your job.
Shift work sleep disorder can also affect your social and family life. They include mood changes, irritability, depression, and difficulty sleeping.
The symptoms of shift work sleep disorder are associated with weight gain, an increased risk of heart disease, depression, and anxiety. The severity of symptoms will vary depending on how many nights you work and how often you change shifts.
To determine if you have a shift work sleep disorder, a doctor may ask you to keep a sleep diary. This record will tell your doctor how many hours you sleep and how you sleep. It is a good idea to keep a log for several weeks. You can also get a home sleep study to diagnose your sleep disorder.
If you work shifts, it is recommended that you have a regular sleep schedule. Getting a regular sleep schedule can help you avoid the problems associated with shift work. You should avoid using your hand phone and other devices while you are sleeping. Make sure you are getting a minimum of seven to nine hours of sleep every day. It is also important to maintain a regular sleep-wake schedule. You should also avoid stimulants such as caffeine and nicotine before bedtime.
You should also consider taking a nap before driving or working. Avoid driving when you are drowsy. If your sleep pattern does not match your work schedule, you should discuss the possibility of a sleep study with your doctor.
There are also several other ways to treat shift work sleep disorder. If you suspect that you have this condition, a sleep medicine specialist can evaluate your symptoms and recommend treatment. Your doctor can also assist you with developing better sleep hygiene practices.
A sleep lab can help you identify the cause of your sleep problems. The doctor might recommend sleeping pills to help you fall asleep. The doctor may also perform tests to rule out other sleep disorders.
If the sleep disorder symptoms are significant, you should discuss with a health care provider. This will help determine if you need a home sleep study or other intervention.