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5 Tips for nurses to survive the night shift

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Introduction

After completing your BSc Nursing degree, we are sure you must be excited to work in the industry. To be able to apply all the gained knowledge of your BSc Nursing degree is amazing right?!

Being a nurse is challenging enough as it is. Working the night shift can be even more challenging sometimes. You need to be able to ensure that you take care of yourself. Because if you don’t then work in the night shift will not only be more difficult. So, along with your glorious BSc Nursing degree, here are some tips for nurses to tackle challenges at work -

Do not work super-long break-free hours

As a fresh BSc Nursing graduate, you are likely accustomed to working long hours. Sacrificing your own health for the sake of providing excellent care to your patients is key. However, there is a limit to how much we can sacrifice before our bodies begin to break down from exhaustion.

If you want to be successful in your BSc Nursing career as a night shift nurse, then it is important that you understand how important sleep and rest. While it may seem like your colleagues are able to function on minimal amounts of sleep. Or even stay alert throughout the night with no trouble at all, this is not true for everyone! We all have different needs when it comes down to caring for ourselves properly. So make sure that yours are met first before attempting anything else related directly back into work itself. You mentors at the institute of health sciences during your BSc Nursing course must have cautioned you regarding this. 

Make sure you get a good rest

As a BSc Nursing graduate, you might be tempted to think that it's not important if you get enough sleep. But getting at least 6 hours of rest every night is vitally important. You need sleep in order to keep your body sharp and alert. Especially when working in a busy hospital setting post your BSc Nursing degree. If you are having trouble sleeping through the night, try taking a hot bath or listening to soothing music before going to bed. Although, try not to use electronics within an hour of falling asleep.

Also, make sure you don't stay in bed too long once you wake up. This can lead to oversleeping rather than getting enough rest. In addition, avoid alcohol consumption or caffeine before bedtime. Both substances can interfere with healthy sleeping patterns by making you feel more alert or jittery. Instead of allowing your body time for deep relaxation during night-time hours, they wear off later on in the day.

Keep yourself hydrated

  • Make sure you drink plenty of water. Night shift for a BSc Nursing graduate can be a challenge, especially if you have to work through the wee hours. If you're on the job during this time it's important that you stay hydrated by drinking water throughout the day and night.
  • Drink coffee! Coffee helps maintain performance and alertness during a long shift at work. It also helps you unwind after a hard day's work so that you can sleep better when off-duty at home.
  • Tea is another beverage that can help with combatting fatigue during an overnight shift at work. It contains caffeine as well as other nutrients like tannins (which are known for their antioxidant properties). They strengthen our immune systems against various diseases. So this is another great tip to have as a BSc Nursing graduate who is about to start a new job after your nursing course.

 Get enough exercise

Another great way to get the most out of your time off is to make sure that you are getting enough exercise. Working the night shift can cause a lot of stress on the body. To combat this is by getting some regular exercise. Studies have shown that people who exercise at least three times per week for at least 30 minutes each. This will lend you more energy, and make you feel happier and less stressed. This will also help you sleep better after your hectic shift.

So how do you fit in all this exercise while still working as a fresh BSc Nursing graduate nurse? You'll need an hour or so each day—the break between shifts is ideal! If possible, try to take a walk around your neighbourhood instead of sitting down for lunch every time. 

Eat healthy

A healthy breakfast is the most important meal of the day, so don’t skip it! Start your morning with a nutritious meal and you’ll have more energy for your shift.

Some great options for a healthy breakfast include toast with peanut butter, yoghurt, and scrambled eggs. If you're looking for something sweet to wake up to, try some fresh fruit. When it comes to lunchtime, try eating an easily transportable meal. Which can include a chicken salad or tuna sandwiches on whole-grain bread along with an apple or banana. Keep protein bars with you in case you feel like eating mid-day.

Conclusion

You can choose to do your BSc nursing at the ITM Institute of health sciences. We have the best of everything. The best faculties, the best infrastructures, the best training curriculum. All of this makes us one of the top institute of health sciences in India. 

We hope this article has been helpful for all you BSc Nursing graduates out there. It can be a difficult job but it is so rewarding when we see patients improve because of our care. We wish you the best of luck with your BSc nursing career!

Do check out our other blogs as well. We try to keep them super informative and engaging. They are very insightful and will help you make career-wise decision-making a lot easier.

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