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Long-Term Effects of Night Shift

Working the night shift for extended periods of time has some negative effects on the health and well-being of workers, according to G. Costa from the University of Verona. These effects vary based on the individual.

Sleep Disturbances

Michael Ingre and Torbjorn Akerstedt from Stockholm University indicate that sleep disturbances are one of the major health problems involved in night shift work. A 2004 study using 169 pairs of retired identical twins indicated that the twin exposed to night work had a 17.8 per cent higher risk of having sleeping problems, even after retirement.

Health Problems

Roger R. Rosa and Michael J. Colligan from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate that people who work night shifts have a higher percentage of heart problems than people who work day shifts. Night shift workers may also have more trouble with stomach ulcers and other stomach complaints than day workers.

Family Life

Rosa and Colligan indicate that evening shift work affects family relationships. The shift worker misses social and family events because of his work schedule and is often unable to attend school functions or other activities that are on a strict time schedule.