The Night Shift May Be Dangerous to Your Health
Hospitals never close and most clinical laboratories operate 24/7 to provide essential diagnostic services. Most laboratorians have a shift preference; with a minority preferring third, or so called "graveyard" shift.
Whether it's a personal preference or a management requirement, at least some laboratorians must work third shift. We are all familiar with the feeling that "night shift techs are different from day shift."
Those who choose that shift voluntarily often like the quiet atmosphere, more casual feel, the lack of politics and freedom from management breathing down their necks. For others, it just fits better with their work/home situation or other commitments, such as school.
Some like the fact that they build more of a rapport with others in the hospital (e.g., nurses and ED doctors) who also customarily work the night shift.
However, a new study released by researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston finds third shift may be dangerous to your health
They found an increased risk of various cancers, including colorectal cancer in those who work overnight. Apparently, it has something to do with circadian rhythms. The researchers theorized that being exposed to light during hours the body expects to be asleep and provide melatonin might be a part of the puzzle.
Apparently, even rotating overnight shifts might have an effect.