Sleeping Tips for Night Shift Workers

Night shift is always a challenge and can have a dramatic effect on your overall health.   Having myself experienced night shift over a ten year period, in my younger years, it seemed appropriate to offer here seven sleeping tips for night shift workers.

7 Tips for a More Enjoyable Night Shift

Most people are extremely sleep deprived. They also do not know how to adjust to this new shift and survive let alone thrive while working this shift.

7 Tips for a More Enjoyable Night Shift

There are definitely challenges and the need for support from those you live with. Here are a few tricks to help you get started.

  1.  Sunglasses are your friends. Light exposure as you are driving home will stimulate your brain that it is time to stay awake so invest in a good pair of dark sunglasses so you do not get too much light exposure.

2.  A daylight simulation light that is at least 10,000 lux               will help your brain to say it is time to be awake (while            you are working).

      Also, one to two hours of light exposure when you wake        up works wonders for your alertness.  You can use it                while getting ready for work.   Just keep the light in                   your peripheral vision.

3.   Always keep a sign next to your doorbell warning that            you are a night shift worker and to not wake you                        unless it is an emergency.  Most people will respect                  that.

7 Tips for a More Enjoyable Night Shift

4.   Eating is your friend and your worst enemy.  When you          are sleep deprived it is difficult to make correct                          decisions about what to eat. You will crave more                        high carbohydrate foods because it will increase                        your sugar levels.

        The jolt is what you are craving.  If instead you realize             and plan for these cravings by having some fruit or                   oatmeal you will avoid the weight gain that is                               usually associated with the change to night shift.

5.   You will be cold at around 3 am so plan ahead and have          a sweater or sweatshirt handy. This is part of the                        body’s circadian rhythm and will just be part of the                  experience.

6.   Do not sit in a dark room during the night. You may find          that you get headaches from sitting in a room with                    light but if you are in the dark room your body will say            it is time to sleep and release Melatonin.  Light is your            friend while working at night.

7 Tips for a More Enjoyable Night Shift

  7.  Movement is also your friend. Walk around, move                    around, do jumping jacks or squats.  Anything that                    causes you to take deep breathes and raise your heart            rate will help your concentration.

As you are adjusting to this new shift you will find that there are tricks for creating routines, working during the shift and how to work with your family and friends to enjoy your life.

Your comments or questions are welcome.

10 thoughts on “Sleeping Tips for Night Shift Workers”

  1. I must be blessed to come across such an amazing post. I have been assigned for night shift for  three weeks and this has been soon troubling and fearful. I am a lover of good and peaceful sleep so depriving sleep would be so hard. I’m glad i am reading these guides to help me sleep well before it gets to my sleeping time. Sleeping would be made easy with these interesting tips. Thanks for this great post!

    1. Thanks for your kind comments Willy, and I am delighted that you plan to try some of the tips.

      I would be interested in knowing how they work out for you if you care to email me later to the email address in the “Contact” button of the menu on my website.


  2. Hi,

    Great article about sleeping tips for the night shift worker. I am lucky that I got this article in the tine when it is extremely needed for me. I work online(work from home mom), so a few months back I was trying to adjust my fork schedule for night time. Because it was hard to work daytime when you have young kids who are in the home.But it impacted very bad in my body. Although I worked at night but couldn’t sleep during the day. So after that, I stopped work on the night.

    But my work so much suffering now that I have decided to start at night again but still was thinking how to manage sleep during the day. After reading this article got some great tips, which I think definitely going to help me. Thanks a lot for this article.

    1. You truly have my sympathy Nazmun !  Even though my youngest child just turned 49 last week,and is on his own, I can certainly imagine how hard it is to juggle looking after the family and trying to get time to work at home as well.  You have my admiration and I hope you are able to find a formula that works for you.

      If you care to check on one of my recent articles involving the fitness tracker I purchased not long ago, it was because of it that I was able to establish that I needed to be getting more sleep every day,and so I am working on that now. It has helped me to see my life and daily routine in other ways also.

      Your comments are much appreciated. Thank you.


  3. Thanks for sharing these tips; very useful information. I am very much familiar with working the night shift when I used to be a practicing nurse.  It is always good to be able to open to learning new things and I like the idea of the sun glasses.

    I have very close friends who are still working in the medical fraternity at nights so I will definitely share this post with them and trust they will find this information helpful.

    1. To be honest Mazie, back in the days when I was working night shift I wish I had known about the sun glasses also.  I came across that tip only in my recent research.  Hope the post can be of help to your friends as well.

      Thanks for your comments.


  4. Thanks for this informative post,  although I’m not a night worker but I do most of the things I would do during the day at night because of the nature of my job, Individuals need to work through the night for numerous reasons. I’m glad I could Find ways to cope between living a healthy existence and being subjected to the many health and safety risks that are elevated during night shifts. I’ll also share this with my friend who is security guard as well. Thanks 

    1. You are most welcome, and thanks for your comments.  Yes, I hope everyone who reads this blog realizes that they are more than welcome to share it with others.


  5. I’ve worked the night shift for some years now, from midnight until 8 am and I’ve tried almost everything suggested on different websites and non works long term. I’ve concluded in my mind that some people are just not suited to working night shifts…. and I’ve decided I must be one of those people and I intend to do something about it. This post looks more practical and different from other posts I’ve read in the past. Hopefully it will work for me.

    Best Regards!

    1. Thanks for your comments and observations Jordon.  Having worked that shift myself for years I certainly agree that night shift is a challenge.  I hope that something in this blog can at least be of some benefit to you.


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