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Shift work and its impact on health

Many people in Oklahoma have work schedules that do not include typical nine-to-five days. Shift work, or work that is performed outside of regular working hours, usually requires them to alter their sleep schedule. Some shift workers must begin work before 6 a.m., and others must get all of their sleeping done during daylight hours.

An analysis of the effects of shift work on sleep and health was published in a peer-reviewed medical journal in late 2016. According to the authors, certain shift schedules have a more negative impact on sleep than others. People that start working before 6 a.m. usually miss out on quality sleep, and workers that sleep during the day usually only get between four and six hours of it. Researchers found that shift workers with evening schedules tended to get the best sleep.

The researchers found that there are connections between work schedules and chronic diseases. Shift workers are more likely to be overweight and obese than workers with nine-to-five schedules, and they have a higher risk of developing Type II diabetes. Heart conditions like myocardial infarctions and ischemic strokes are more common in shift workers than other employees.

People who have been working a shift schedule for many years may want to talk to an attorney about whether their health conditions are covered under workers' compensation insurance. The attorney can review the appropriate medical records in order to establish a nexus between the disease and the workplace environment or schedule and in so doing anticipate the disputing of the claim by the employer or its insurer.

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