Impact of Decreased Sleep on Pain and Work Performance of Hospital Care Workers

A new study from the Harvard Center for Work, Health and Wellbeing (a US National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Centre of Excellence) found that sleep deprivation can cause problems in work performance among hospital care workers.

According to NIOSH, sleep deficiency including short sleep duration, insomnia symptoms and sleep insufficiency or all three “is significantly associated with pain, functional limitations of daily living tasks due to that pain, and difficulty performing work tasks due to that pain, among hospital care workers.”

The study recommends that complete intervention be put into place including a “sleep deficiency component in assessments of modifiable outcomes.” The study also recommends flexibility on shift length and timing. Educational programs to help workers understand the relation of sleep, musculoskeletal disorders, and pain are also recommended.

The study is published in the American Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. Additional details on the research can be viewed on NIOSH.

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