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Shifting Sleep

Written by Kate Kellaway

Shift work is an unavoidable fact of life for some of us in today's round-the-clock society, but there are steps you can take to reduce the impact it has on your sleep – and your life.

Working night shift is a big challenge for the body. Attempts to overcome powerful regulators of the sleep-wake cycle like sunlight are not always successful, so it is not uncommon for shift workers to feel drowsy at work then unable to sleep during the day. Family and social obligations can also make it difficult to adapt and commit to a daytime sleep schedule. And rotating shifts that demand repeated changes to sleep and wake times can result in an internal circadian clock that is constantly out of sync.

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