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Shift work

Historical Background: – Shift work system originated in the late 18th century. – Karl Marx wrote about shift work in Capital, Volume 1. – Cromford […]

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Historical Background:
– Shift work system originated in the late 18th century.
– Karl Marx wrote about shift work in Capital, Volume 1.
– Cromford Mill ran day and night with two twelve-hour shifts starting from 1772.

Health Effects:
– Shift work increases the risk of shift work sleep disorder.
– Associated with an increased risk of diabetes mellitus type 2 and breast cancer.
– Listed as probably carcinogenic by the WHO.
– Raises the risk of various health issues like heart attacks, obesity, and reproductive disorders.
– Linked to early menopause and shortened lifespan.

Impact on Chronic Diseases:
– Worsens chronic diseases like heart disease, hypertension, and asthma.
– Can exacerbate sleep disorders and substance abuse.
– Artificial lighting contributes to disturbed homeostasis.
– Increases the risk of smoking.
– Health consequences depend on chronotype and shift timing.

Muscle Health:
– Altered sleep and eating times from shift work.
– Contributes to negative protein balance and insulin resistance.
– Increases body fat and weight gain.
– Alters appetite-regulating hormones.
– Can lead to more long-term health challenges.

Cognitive Performance:
– Injuries and accidents increase on evening and night shifts.
– Fatigue linked to workplace injuries.
– Sleep timing affects cognitive performance and alertness.
– Impairment due to sleep deprivation can be compared to impairment due to alcohol intoxication.
– Shift work has been classified as a specific disorder known as shift work sleep disorder.

Shift work (Wikipedia)

Shift work is an employment practice designed to keep a service or production line operational at all times. The practice typically sees the day divided into shifts, set periods of time during which different groups of workers perform their duties. The term "shift work" includes both long-term night shifts and work schedules in which employees change or rotate shifts.

In medicine and epidemiology, shift work is considered a risk factor for some health problems in some individuals, as disruption to circadian rhythms may increase the probability of developing cardiovascular disease, cognitive impairment, diabetes, altered body composition and obesity, among other conditions.

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