Psychological Impact of Shift Work
- 5 Downloads
Purpose of Review
Technology and globalization have been central forces driving the need for shift work. This review examines recent scientific developments that inform our understanding of how psychological processes contribute to and are impacted by shift work.
Nascent research is beginning to expand beyond circadian misalignment to elucidate the phenomenology of shift work and the associated psychological impairments. Psychological processes and their interaction with biology are considered in the pathophysiology of shift work sleep disorder. Additionally, a review of the adverse consequences of shift work in the cognitive, emotional, and psychosocial domains are reviewed and discussed.
The phenomenology of shift work encompasses multiple domains of biopsychosocial functioning. As such, interventions to reduce the adverse impact of shift work may benefit from an integrated approach.
KeywordsShift work sleep disorder Circadian rhythms Stress Cognitive functioning Social functioning Affective functioning
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
Philip Cheng and Christopher L Drake declare no conflicts of interest.
Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent
This article does contain studies with human subjects performed by any of the authors.
Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance: •• Of major importance
- 2.Parent-Thirion A, Vermeylen G, van Houten G, Lyly-Yrjänäinen M, Biletta I, Cabrita J. Fifth European survey on working conditions. 2014.Google Scholar
- 3.Barnes M. Making time use explicit in an investigation of social exclusion in the UK. RES-061-23-0122. Swindon: ESRC; 2011.Google Scholar
- 5.Ferri P, Guadi M, Marcheselli L, Balduzzi S, Magnani D, Di Lorenzo R. The impact of shift work on the psychological and physical health of nurses in a general hospital: a comparison between rotating night shifts and day shifts. Risk Manag Healthc Policy. 2016;9:203–11.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- 6.American Academy of Sleep Medicine. The international classification of sleep disorders: diagnostic and coding manual. 2014.Google Scholar
- 7.• Kalmbach DA, Pillai V, Cheng P, Arnedt JT, Drake CL. Shift work disorder, depression, and anxiety in the transition to rotating shifts: the role of sleep reactivity. Sleep Med. 2015;16:1532–8. Selected because it uses a longitudinal approach to demonstrate that psychological factors such as sleep reactivity and stress predict shift work sleep disorder. This paper suggests that factors other than circadian misalignment should be considered in shift work.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- 11.Fernandez-Mendoza J, Shaffer ML, Olavarrieta-Bernardino S, Vgontzas AN, Calhoun SL, Bixler EO, et al. Cognitive–emotional hyperarousal in the offspring of parents vulnerable to insomnia: a nuclear family study. J Sleep Res. 2014;23:489–98. https://doi.org/10.1111/jsr.12168.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- 15.Archer SN, Schmidt C, Vandewalle G, Dijk D-J. Phenotyping of PER3 variants reveals widespread effects on circadian preference, sleep regulation, and health. Sleep Med Rev. 2017; https://doi.org/10.1016/j.smrv.2017.10.008.
- 17.Cheng P, Tallent G, Burgess H, Tran KM, Roth T, Drake CL. Daytime sleep disturbance in night shift work: the role of PERIOD3? J Clin Sleep Med. 2018;14:393–400.Google Scholar
- 19.Horowitz TS, Cade BE, Wolfe JM, Czeisler CA. Searching night and day: a dissociation of effects of circadian phase and time awake on visual selective attention and vigilance. Psychol Sci. 2003;14:549–57. https://doi.org/10.1046/j.0956-7976.2003.psci_1464.x. CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- 23.Belcher R, Gumenyuk V, Roth T. Insomnia in shift work disorder relates to occupational and neurophysiological impairment. J Clin Sleep Med JCSM Off Publ Am Acad Sleep Med 2015;11:457–465. https://doi.org/10.5664/jcsm.4606.
- 25.US Chemical Safety Board. Refinery explosion and fire. Washington, DC: 2007.Google Scholar
- 26.•• Marquié J-C, Tucker P, Folkard S, Gentil C, Ansiau D. Chronic effects of shift work on cognition: findings from the VISAT longitudinal study. Occup Environ Med 2014:oemed–2013. Selected because of its unique contribution to the understanding of the long-term trajectory of recovery from shift work.Google Scholar
- 32.Soria V, Martínez-Amorós È, Escaramís G, Valero J, Pérez-Egea R, García C, et al. Differential association of circadian genes with mood disorders: CRY1 and NPAS2 are associated with unipolar major depression and CLOCK and VIP with bipolar disorder. Neuropsychopharmacology. 2010;35:1279–89.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- 41.Driesen K, Jansen NWH, van Amelsvoort LGPM, Kant I. The mutual relationship between shift work and depressive complaints—a prospective cohort study. Scand J Work Environ Health Stockh 2011;37:402–410.Google Scholar
- 44.Jensen HI, Larsen JW, Thomsen TD. The impact of shift work on intensive care nurses’ lives outside work: a cross-sectional study. J Clin Nurs 2017:n/a-n/a. https://doi.org/10.1111/jocn.14197.
- 46.Becker L, Barnes M. Understanding participatory time for groups at risk of social exclusion, 2009.Google Scholar