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Night Shift Nurse Stress - Research Paper Example

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The history of nursing has necessitated the need for nurses to work night shifts in many environments to accomplish the objective of continuity of patient care. As humans are biologically designed to be awake during the day and sleep at night, there has been growing concern and…
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Night Shift Nurse Stress
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Night Shift Nurse Stress

The paper discusses the research findings indicating that night shift work exacerbates stress because it is positively correlated with adverse health effects, including sleep, physiological, and psychological disorders. In addition, considerations and recommendations to the nurse to alleviate the associated stress, as well as promote adaptability and tolerance for the night shift routine, both at work and home, are discussed.
Continuity of patient care requires that health care providers be available to work night shift. According to Blachowicz and Letizia (2006), “Nursing is among the many professions affected by the requirement to work outside of normal daytime hours. While benefits exist, nurses face significant challenges when they work alternate shifts” (p. 274). Over the years, concern and interest have resulted in studies conducted to determine the health risks and effects of night shift work on the nurse. As humans are naturally designed to be awake during the day and sleep at night, working nights disrupts the circadian rhythm, or internal clock. Night shift work exacerbates stress because it is positively correlated with adverse health effects, including sleep, physiological, and psychological disorders.  This paper highlights some of the most common occupational health risks and disorders associated with working nights. In addition, considerations and recommendations to help alleviate the associated stress will be discussed.
Working night shifts is a necessary part of a nurse’s job description. However, working night shifts for long periods can have a detrimental effect on sleep, resulting in fatigue and other adverse consequences. Happell et al. (2013, p. 642) report that working night shifts resulted in physical stress and exhaustion for nurses because they could not get an adequate amount of sleep. This shows that night shifts can disturb the physiological working of ... Read More
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