Work and Fatigue
Work and Fatigue
Fatigue has been broadly described as “a feeling of weariness, tiredness or lack of energy”.1 In workplace settings, it is commonly associated with nonstandard schedules, such as night shift work and extended work hours, which disrupt or shorten sleep. Fatigue can also be associated with other workplace factors such as stress, physically or mentally demanding tasks, or working in hot environments. It can stem from a number of different factors and its effects extend beyond sleepiness. Fatigue can slow down reaction times, reduce attention or concentration, limit short-term memory and impair judgement.
High levels of fatigue can affect any worker in any occupation or industry with serious consequences for worker safety and health. Learning the risks for fatigue-related events, identifying the sources of fatigue, and using strategies to manage fatigue will help keep workers safe and healthy.
1 A.D.A.M. Medical Encyclopedia [Internet]. Fatigue; [reviewed 2019 Apr 16; cited 2020 Dec 12]; Available from: https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/003088.htmexternal icon
- Research gaps and needs for preventing worker fatigue in the transportation and utilities industriesexternal icon
- Findings from a systematic review of fatigue interventions: What’s (not) being tested in mining and other industrial environmentsexternal icon
- Blue light and sleep: What nurses need to knowpdf iconexternal icon
- NIOSH Science Blog: Here Comes the Sun! Tips to Adapt to Daylight Saving Time
- Podcast: Northeast Center for Occupational Health and Safety, Fishing Forward Podcast, Episodes 6-8external icon
- Video: Stress and Cardiovascular Disease among First Responders
- NIOSH Worker Well-Being Questionnaire (WellBQ) (includes questions on fatigue, sleep, and work scheduling)
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