Numerous circumstances including insufficient, interrupted or poor quality sleep over a period of time can result in worker fatigue. Fatigue is our body’s indicator that we need more rest. Long work hours and lengthy and fluctuating shifts can be very demanding on our bodies and minds. The body runs on a circadian rhythm sleep-wake cycle. Most people sleep best during the night. Changes in time zones, seasonal time changes and alternating work schedules can disturb the body’s natural cycle, resulting in fatigue and a lack of mental awareness.
Working prolonged shifts can also increase the effects of noise and other environmental challenges.
What Employee Population Does This Impact?
Erratic and prolonged shifts are widespread among transportation workers, first responders, emergency workers, military personnel, construction workers, hospitality workers and many others. Fatigue can cause exhaustion, irritability, reduced attentiveness, and more issues that can result in problems in the workplace. Numerous studies have shown that fatigue can be associated with health complications in certain people.