That's how bad working irregular hours is for your health later in life

It may sound boring, but working 9 to 5 is best for your health. According to recent research, irregular working hours lead to all kinds of health problems later in life.

It has been known for some time that working outside normal working hours, especially night shifts, is bad for your health. According to a 2017 Health Council recommendation, long-term night work increases the risk of sleep problems, diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

Working irregularly for long periods of time
in This new study The impact of irregular work was examined over a much longer period on workers aged between 22 and 50 years. There was data from over 7,000 Americans, over 60% of whom had (mostly) normal work hours. Just under 30 percent initially worked during business hours but then switched to evening or night shifts or variable hours. The results were clear: informal workers slept less and worse, and were more likely to develop depression when they approached age 50. Fatigue and psychological complaints make people more likely to live unhealthy lives. Moreover, it has been increasing over the years.

Unequally distributed
The biggest consequences were for those who still enjoyed normal working hours in their 20s and did not switch until a decade later. It was just as bad for your health as not having a high school diploma. Informal services are unequally distributed across society. For example, black Americans were more likely to have irregular work and thus had worse health. Irregular work therefore contributes to health inequalities.

night shifts
We talked about it with Wen Jue Han from New york university. “A job where the hours constantly change between day, evening and night and the hours are irregular can have a significant impact on daily routines. It affects when someone sleeps, eats and socializes,” he explains. “But these varying working hours include night shifts. So it is possible that there are some health consequences from that. If people have to be awake when the body really needs to rest, this disrupts the circadian clock and therefore sleep, including sleep quality.”

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I learned young
The researcher also discusses the results of his research. “This study examines the working hours of people between the ages of 22 and 49 and the quality of health and sleep at the age of 50. From this we can conclude that a 25-year variation in working hours is harmful to health and sleep. My other study shows that it is important at any period of life And how long people work irregularly. Physical health seems to be mainly affected by working hours at the age of 40 to 49 years, while psychological complaints are mainly a result of irregular work at the age of 22 to 29 years.

Wen Jue Han was surprised by the results. “This study began with the assumption that people with poorer social statuses were more likely to work irregular hours, which may have an impact on their health and sleep. But the results appear to confirm the mental health paradox between blacks and whites. For example, white women reported Black men slept the most and black men the least, but the opposite was true for sleep quality. Given the stress that racial groups experience in daily life, such as discrimination and poor employment status, they would be expected to have worse health than white people. But our results show something Completely different: Black men have the best quality sleep ever and are as mentally and physically healthy as the rest of us.

People at risk
Yet he qualifies: “Despite this finding, I would have to say that black men and women with less than a high school diploma who had variable work hours for a significant portion of their working lives were at the highest risk of ill health among all participants.” In contrast, white men with a college degree were more likely to be in good health if they had stable work hours.

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The researcher looks a bit sad and disappointed at the end. “Work that should provide us with the means to live an enjoyable life has become a health risk for some due to different working hours in this increasingly unequal society. People in vulnerable social situations, such as women, blacks and the less educated, must They disproportionately bear these health consequences.

Megan Vasquez

"Creator. Coffee buff. Internet lover. Organizer. Pop culture geek. Tv fan. Proud foodaholic."

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