The Night Nurse: a podcast about one woman’s switch from night’s to day’s was produced by JoAnna Klein was a special project on Dormancy by Scienceline.org. It is reprinted here with permission from Ms. Klein.
Most of us wake up in the morning, have some coffee and a shower (or whatever it is we do) and head straight to work. We’re home around six — sometimes eight or nine — and at some point after the sun has set, we’ve put on our pajamas and crawled into bed. But nearly 20 percent of Americans do just the opposite. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, about 15 million Americans do shift work. These nurses, doctors, policemen, firemen, bartenders, factory workers and others spend their nights awake in the dark, and their days asleep in the light. This type of schedule disrupts the circadian clock, limits access to Vitamin D from the sun and takes its toll on the mind and body.
“You’ve got to know how to play it,” says Sasha Winslow, a registered nurse who spent almost a decade working nights. If you catch yourself caught up in the night game, there are strategies to help you win — or at least live a little better. (continue reading here)
Listen to the podcast