Effects of Night Shift Work

While some are spending 6 to 9 hours in dreamland, others are wide awake and working through the night. No matter if you are about to switch to the graveyard shift by your employer or you are planning on saying “yes” to a job opportunity that entails you working at night, this article is for you.

Do you want to know some of the most terrible health effects of opting for a night shift work? Then read on. Afterwards, share this article to let your family and friends who are working at night to get to know them, too!

Before we take a look at those unfavorable effects on your health, let us first take a look at the reason why you and everybody else who do not have the traditional 9 to 5 work can be at risk.

According to scientists, it all boils down to the disruption of the circadian rhythm — our bodies are designed to stay awake and alert during the day, and asleep when the night strikes. Individuals who work at night have circadian rhythms that are disrupted as they completely go the opposite direction — they are awake instead of asleep at night.

When the circadian rhythm becomes upset, that’s the time when all sorts of health problems show up. One of the very first issues that may be encountered is trouble getting some sleep. By everyone’s experience, it’s no secret that lack of sleep can cause the mind and body’s functioning to go downhill.

Certainly, failure to get some much-needed Z’s can be very stressful to the body. And when stress goes through the roof and stays there for a long, long time, many different problems are bound to strike.

Aside from insomnia, here are some of the worst effects of night shift work on the health, experts say:

Chronic Fatigue

It’s no secret that lack of sleep can leave one feeling fatigued mentally and physically, and those who work at night and then twist and turn in bed while everybody else is awake may end up feeling drained. One of the dangers of being fatigued is increased risk of accidents not only in the workplace, but also outside of it.

Type 2 Diabetes

Doctors say that a lot of type 2 diabetes cases these days involve individuals who are slaving away through the night. It is said that such can be blamed on the unfavorable effect of night shift work on insulin activity — with the activity of insulin disrupted, the levels of sugar in the blood increase which then paves the way for type 2 diabetes.


If you are a figure-conscious individual, then working at night may not be ideal for you. That’s because controlled studies had shown that participants who had a hard time getting enough sleep during the day after working the entire night gained a lot of excess pounds, eventually causing them to be obese.

Mood Disorders

Everyone knows that failure to get a good night’s sleep can cause one to become irritable and moody, and it doesn’t really come as a shock why many of those who work at night and fail to get enough sleep during the day are vulnerable to mood disorders like depression. However, experts say it may also be blamed on not being happy with the shift.

Certain Cancers

When the circadian rhythm becomes disturbed, the normal levels of melatonin ends up disrupted. According to scientists, it’s not just insomnia that can strike from a disruption in melatonin levels, but also certain types of cancers. Studies have revealed that prostate and breast cancer risks are increased when melatonin production gets out of whack.

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