Interim NIOSH Training for Emergency Responders: Reducing Risks Associated with Long Work Hours

Medicines

someone holding medicine and a glass of water

Some medicines and chronic diseases increase work time sleepiness or create difficulties with getting good-quality sleep. This will put you at higher risk for causing a fatigue-related injury or error.

If you are overly sleepy or fatigued during work, consider your medications. Sometimes a healthcare provider can make an adjustment to reduce the sleepiness side effect. Sleepiness can occur with many commonly used medications, such as

  • Some antihistamines
  • Some prescription and over-the-counter medications used to treat insomnia
  • Benzodiazepines (a type of tranquilizer)
  • Narcotic pain medications
  • Some antidepressants

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Page last reviewed: April 1, 2020