12 Hour Shift In Nursing

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Nursing is a profession that is known for requiring staff to work nights, weekends, and holidays. This is a duty that most nurses are aware of prior to going into the field, however, they may not be fully aware of the impact these varied shifts have on personal health and performance. These types of fluctuating work hours are often referred to as shift work, which is defined by Berger and Hobbs (2006) as shifts taking place aside from the traditional daytime hours (p. 465). Typical hospital shifts outside of the day shift are usually classified as evening shift or night shift. Some nurses may work permanent days or nights; however, it is more common for nurses to find themselves rotating between the two shifts. Studies have shown that shift…show more content…
Nursing is a profession that is very demanding. Facilities nationwide primarily require their nursing staff to work 12 hour shifts. The benefit to 12 hour shifts is that nurses spend less days at the facility, however, it is very rare that the nurse is able to clock out from the shift at the 12-hour mark. By the time end of shift report is finished and the nurse gathers their things it is often close to a 13-hour shift, which makes the amount of time to sleep in between shifts minimal if the nurse is working consecutive days. Lack of sleep can lead to many unfavorable effects on the body. Some of these effects include reduced hunger, indigestion, cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, breast cancer, mental disorders, diabetes, and increased body fat (Pryce, 2016). Therefore, it is crucial that nurses try to obtain an optimal amount of sleep in between shifts to prevent sleep related…show more content…
Each of my shifts for preceptorship were night shifts. This was an adjustment for me as I had never worked consecutive overnight shifts prior to this semester of nursing school. I adapted fairly well to this change after the second night of the experience. However, I found that my body adjusted too well to night shift and on the nights that I didn’t have a shift I wasn’t able to fall asleep until early morning hours. I also had a hard time resisting the urge to nap during the days that I had off. As a result, I felt that I spent less time on school work and had much less time for family and friends. I am glad that I had the opportunity to experience overnight shifts because I plan to work at Rapid City Regional Hospital and they require nursing staff to work rotating
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