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NIOSH Training for Nurses on Shift Work and Long Work Hours

Naps at Work

Planned napping and spontaneous dozing off are different in terms of background physiology and possible consequences. Unplanned dozing could lead to accidents and errors. However, a number of studies indicate that providing an opportunity to nap during the work period (planned napping) is a useful strategy to increase alertness.

  • A brief (about 30-minute) nap can increase your alertness during the night shift.28-31
  • You can gain the benefits of both caffeine and a short nap by consuming caffeine and then immediately taking a short nap.21
  • Some guidelines for shift workers in the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia recommend a brief nap during the scheduled work break, allowing some post-nap time for sleep inertia to dissipate before work tasks are resumed.32
Module: 7, Page 7 of 13