Irregular working hours are increasing in the "24-h Society" and the majority of the working population is engaged in non-standard working hours. Shfft work sleep disorder is the most frequent complaint of shift workers, mainly due to de-synchronization of sleep/wake cycle due to night work, early awakening in morning shifts, and work-non work conflicts at family and social levels. It is one of the main causes of intolerance to shift work, and may be affected by personal characteristics (e.g. age, morningness/eveningness, rigidity/flexibility of sleeping habits, napping) and working schedules. Too early starts of morning shifts, backward shift rotations, and too short intervals between shifts, are the most important issues to be considered and to be taken into consideration in preventive actions. Occupational health physicians have to deal with concurrent approaches at both group and individual levels. Epidemiological enquiries help assess the problem at group level and establish appropriate preventive measures (e.g. shift schedule arrangements, medical surveillance). On the other hand, the clinical evaluations deal with the ability to differentiate "tolerable" troubles (compatible with mild and transitory perturbation of the sleep/wake cycle) from more severe disorders, asking for prompt interventions on the individual (transfer to day work, treatment, rehabilitation).
|Translated title of the contribution||Sleep and working hours|
|Number of pages||3|
|Journal||Giornale Italiano di Medicina del Lavoro ed Ergonomia|
|Publication status||Published - Jul 2008|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health