Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Shifting the safety balance for overnight workers

Date:
December 3, 2012
Source:
Monash University
Summary:
Sleep researchers have developed the world's first screening tool to help reduce workplace accidents and illnesses, including cardiovascular disease and cancer, caused by shift work.

An international team of sleep researchers has developed the world's first screening tool to help reduce workplace accidents and illnesses, including cardiovascular disease and cancer, caused by shift work.

Related Articles


Published in the journal Sleep, the new tool will enable health professionals and industry to better understand individual vulnerability to the health and safety impacts of shift work.

This screening questionnaire for a condition known as shift work disorder (SWD) has been developed by researchers from Monash University, and US partners, Harvard Medical School, Brigham and Women's Hospital, and the Henry Ford Hospital.

At least 15 per cent of workers in Australia, the US, and the United Kingdom, and around 23 per cent of workers in Japan are estimated to work outside normal hours, causing significant disruption to their natural sleep-wake schedules. SWD, characterised by extreme sleepiness and/or insomnia, is thought to affect around 10 per cent of shift workers.

Associate Professor Shantha Rajaratnam, of Monash and Harvard University, said the prevalence of shift work has been unknown due to the lack of accurate assessment tools.

"Shift work is a reality of modern economies, but research has shown that there are very real health risks associated with working outside regular hours," Associate Professor Rajaratnam said.

"Aside from associated health problems, shift workers are significantly more at risk of workplace injuries. The workers most affected by sleep disruption -- those with SWD -- account for a significant proportion of this risk and need to be identified."

Shift work, especially overnight, is associated with a higher rate of car crashes, industrial accidents, actual and near-miss injuries and quality-control errors on the job.

Secondary health problems linked with shift work include cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, gastrointestinal diseases and mood disorders, including depression.

"This questionnaire is an important step in better understanding causes of vulnerability to shift work, and targeting interventions to those who most need them," Associate Professor Rajaratnam said.

"However, this is only a first step and further tests of actual impairment from lack of sleep must be developed for implementation in occupational settings."

"More collaboration between researchers, industry and government partners is needed to tackle these significant challenges and make shift work as safe and productive as possible."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Monash University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Monash University. "Shifting the safety balance for overnight workers." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 December 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121203093802.htm>.
Monash University. (2012, December 3). Shifting the safety balance for overnight workers. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121203093802.htm
Monash University. "Shifting the safety balance for overnight workers." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121203093802.htm (accessed December 19, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, December 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) It's hard to resist those delicious but fattening carbs we all crave during the winter months, but there are some ways to stay satisfied without consuming the extra calories. Vanessa Freeman (@VanessaFreeTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) More than 100 motorcyclists hit the road to spread awareness messages about Ebola. Nearly 7,000 people have now died from the virus, almost all of them in west Africa, according to the World Health Organization. Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) A double-amputee makes history by becoming the first person to wear and operate two prosthetic arms using only his mind. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins