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The Impact of Work Schedules, Home, and Work Demands on Self-Reported Sleep in Registered Nurses

Geiger-Brown, Jeanne PhD, RN; Trinkoff, Alison ScD, RN; Rogers, Valerie E. PhD, RN

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: March 2011 - Volume 53 - Issue 3 - p 303–307
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0b013e31820c3f87
Original Articles

Objective: To explore the relationship of work schedules to self-reported restless and inadequate sleep in a large population-based sample of registered nurses.

Methods: Cross-sectional mailed survey (n = 2246). Work schedule measures included hours worked per day and per week, weekends per month, shift, frequency of quick returns, mandatory overtime or on-call hours, and circadian mismatch, with indexing to reflect overall schedule adversity. Odds of restless and inadequate sleep related to work schedule components are reported, adjusted for age, childcare, and other domestic responsibilities and physical and psychosocial work demands.

Results: Odds of inadequate and restless sleep showed a clear dose effect for adversity of work schedule, even when adjusted for age and home demands. Odds were attenuated after adjustment for work demands.

Conclusions: Current scheduling practices and high work demands negatively impact nurses' sleep and may be partially explained by exposure to work demands.

From the Work and Health Research Center (Drs Geiger-Brown and Trinkoff), School of Nursing, University of Maryland, Baltimore, Md; and Center for Sleep and Respiratory Neurobiology (Dr Rogers), University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pa. Work was performed at the School of Nursing, University of Maryland.

Address correspondence to: Jeanne Geiger-Brown, PhD, RN, School of Nursing, University of Maryland, 655 W Lombard St, Ste 575, Baltimore, MD 21201;

©2011The American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine