Night Shift Work is a Nightmare for Human Health

By Gary Cutlack on at

Those who work night shifts are at higher risk of damaging their bodies, with research suggesting our internal rhythms and organs are disrupted at a molecular level by working all night and trying to sleep during the day.

Researchers from the Sleep Research Centre in Surrey claim breaking from the natural day/night rhythm changed hormone levels, body temperature and brain function in the 22 shift workers it studied, with the effects of irregular shift patterns altering the genetically programmed timings that adjust body functions.

Prof Hugh Piggins from the University of Manchester, told the BBC: "The study indicated that the acute effects are quite severe. It is surprising how large an effect was noticed so quickly, it's perhaps a larger disruption than might have been appreciated." [BBC]

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