The Effects Of Performance Impairment Caused By Sleep Loss

2636 WordsOct 12, 201411 Pages
Introduction Sleep loss poses a major risk to the 24h operating industries, where shift work is imperative. In Australia, sixteen percent of employees are classified as shift workers (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2003). The reaccommodated daily sleep dose for a healthy adult is 7- 8h (Van Dongen et al., 2003), but shift workers on average only obtain about 5h sleep a day (Akerstedt, 2003). This level of sleep loss is known to impair cognitive performance (Van Dongen et al., 2003), which can in turn compromise safety and reduce productivity (Rosekind, 2005). The extent of performance impairment caused by sleep loss appears to be profound for some individuals but moderate for others (Wilkinson, 1961). If these individual differences are substantial, they constitute a trait, and this trait can be predicted, performance impairment due to sleep loss may well be managed through identifying and providing proactive interventions to high-risk (i.e., more vulnerable or less resistant) individuals. In fact, several lines of research have been conducted to investigate individual differences in the performance impact of sleep loss. In the past research with individual differences and sleep deprivation, has focused primarily on external contributors; demographics and behaviors as explanations, however, this has yielded only limited success (Van Dongen & Belenky, 2009), recent research has a stronger emphasis on multifaceted explanations for sleep deficit resilience and
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