I want to express my appreciation for all the people who work graveyard shift. I did it for 13 years, so I can tell you that it affects your health and your relationships. Your whole world revolves around a desperate need to get enough sleep. You miss festivals and events and ceremonies, and dating is all but impossible. You can’t attend religious ceremonies. Just about everything that allows you to be a part of your community is out of reach. And you are always, always exhausted.
You are also driving the roads at a time when a higher percentage of drivers are intoxicated or otherwise impaired. There are fewer pedestrians to deal with, but a higher percentage of them are out to commit crimes. You are a lot less safe than those of us who work day or swing shifts.
The articles I’m attaching below show that graveyard shift workers have a higher risk of heart attack and stroke, diabetes and cancer. They gain weight at a higher rate. Their divorce rate is higher. They average fewer than 6 hours of sleep per day, and are more likely to be in car accidents.
Graveyard shift workers help the economy. They keep goods and services flowing, and often do so while being overlooked by the rest of us. When you call 911 or rush to the emergency room at 3 a.m, they are there. They are why you can look forward to next day delivery. They are our security guards, our street sweepers, our mail sorters and our factory workers. They drive our trucks, ships, buses and planes.
I want to thank all graveyard shift workers, past and present, for your hard work and sacrifices. Many people don’t realize how much you are depended upon, but you really do make a difference. Thank you, and please share this with all the graveyard shift workers in your life.
The Night Shift | Psychology Today
Managing 24/7: Shiftwork and Divorce – CIRCADIAN
The risks of night work (apa.org)
Shift Workers – Consumer Health News | HealthDay
Night Shifts Linked to Higher Risk of Heart Attack, Stroke | TIME.com
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