It has been estimated that the risk of working rotating shifts approaches that of smoking one pack of cigarettes per day. Other issues include problems with sleeping and the social toll, with higher rates of substance abuse and depression.
One study has suggested that six or seven consecutive night shifts are associated with the most severe impact.
In a column for this month's edition of the WA Police Union magazine, Police News, Professor Daniel Fatovich offers some sleeping tips for those rostered on shift work.
Professor Fatovich works in Emergency Medicine at Royal Perth Hospital and UWA's Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences.
Professor Daniel Fatovich (Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences) (+61 8) 9224 3469 / (+61 4) 09 103 818 David Stacey (UWA Public Affairs) (+61 8) 488 3229 / (+61 4) 32 637 716