Sleep Deprivation: Dangerous at All Hours

According to the National Safety Council (NSC), more than 1 in 3 people are not getting enough sleep. Identifying fatigue can be difficult, especially if you are consistently tired. After all, nearly everyone has experienced tiredness.

Fatigue: Who’s At Risk?

Fatigue is a physical, mental, or social impairment. It includes reduced energy, sleepiness, and tiredness. Individuals who are fatigued find that an increased effort is needed for them to perform everyday tasks. Those who are most at risk for fatigue and incidents related to it are:

  • Shift workers
  • People who get less than seven hours of sleep a night
  • Individuals who have untreated sleep disorders
  • Employees who repeatedly perform a tedious task or perform a task for extended periods
  • Parents and caregivers of young children
  • Individuals who are taking certain medications that interfere with sleep

Preventing Fatigue

Shift workers often suffer from a chronic loss of sleep due to disruption of the body’s circadian rhythm. Those who work night shift and individuals driving at night are especially vulnerable to sleep loss. The NSC reports that the risk of safety issues is 30% higher during night shifts when compared to morning shifts. If you work at night, it’s especially important to get enough sleep. Align your body’s natural clock with your work schedule and try to maintain a consistent sleep schedule even on your days off. When sleeping during the day, use blackout curtains to keep your bedroom dark.

Even losing a couple of hours of sleep each night can lead to negative effects. In fact, one study showed that losing even two hours of sleep from a typical eight-hour sleep schedule was similar to the effects of consuming three beers.

Get Enough Rest

Fatigue leads to an increase in injuries and fatalities on the job and on the road. Approximately 13% of work injuries can be attributed to sleep problems. Sleep deprivation can lead to obesity, depression, cardiovascular disease, and other illnesses. It also results in about $136 billion in health-related lost productivity each year.

Sleep disorders such as obstructive sleep apnea can contribute to fatigue and negatively impact your overall quality of life, as well as your work performance and focus while driving. If you struggle to get enough rest, talk to your doctor about getting screened for sleep disorders. Get tips for improving your sleep here. You can also try this sleep habits assessment tool to try to find out what’s keeping you from getting enough sleep.

If you or a loved one has suffered from a personal injury, contact the Schuerman Law office today. Schuerman Law has been working with personal injury claims for over 40 years. John Schuerman will compassionately advocate for injured individuals as well as their families while fighting for full compensation of their claims. Schuerman Law offers evening and weekend appointments in addition to home and hospital visits. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 1-800-274-0045.

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