Careers that involve fully accredited RCG courses (Responsible Service of Gambling) generally have a night shift component to them. You may never have worked night shifts and knowing how to plan for it personally will enhance your career.
The Human Body & Night Shifts
The human body has its own ‘clock’ that is aligned to day and night time schedules. It is called the circadian clock and the body adjusts your heart rate, blood pressure, temperature, digestion, brain activity and other functions throughout the day, guided by this ‘clock’.
If you switch between day and night shifts, you need to maximise your health regime and help your circadian clock. Some shift workers experience unsettled digestion, weight gain or mishaps due to daytime drowsiness.
The Sleep Cycle
Generally, humans need about eight hours of sleep at night. Your ‘circadian clock’ assesses the amount of light around you throughout the day.
At night, the reduced light is registered and elicits a melatonin release (the sleep hormone). The high levels of melatonin only start reducing at daybreak.
Neurotransmitter levels rise during daylight hours and promote alertness. And this is your awake-asleep system or circadian rhythm.
Your body promotes sleep at night by dropping the body’s temperature. The cooler the body, the more likely you’ll fall asleep. This is why it is difficult for some shift workers to fall asleep at 08h00.
Create a cool bedroom temperature to help you achieve a better morning start to your sleep. Keep the room cool for a better chance of longer, deeper sleep.
Health practitioners advise that you can help your body and mind maintain good health and better concentration with these healthy actions:
- Avoid high fat and high sugar foods in your daily diet.
- Do include green, raw or al dente vegetables in your diets daily.
- Keep your weight at its optimum weight and avoid being overweight.
- Do cardio exercise every day, even if it’s only 15 minutes some days.
- Learn mood stabilising methods, e.g. martial arts, meditation, etc.
- During night shift weeks, avoid spicy or complex foods to give your digestion a break.
- If you are tired, avoid driving and discuss this with your manager to avoid work-related accidents.
- Work out a family-time plan and family habits that benefit everyone.
An optimal pattern for rotating shifts has never been found. Shift workers generally concur that it is easier to rotate forwards, i.e. day, afternoon, night, as opposed to backwards.
There is an ongoing debate about whether prolonged rotations of up to 3 weeks are better than 3 days. It seems to be a subjective choice.
The human body requires approximately ten days to fully adjust to a night shift rotation. The circadian rhythm is then usually thrown off during days off as the worker reverts to daytime hours.
The industries that require RCG courses and night shift work offer fantastic career opportunities wherein junior people can work their way right up to a director level. The initial night shift work is a fair trade-off for the potentially lucrative destination job.
Get your RCG course started now and launch your phenomenal career.