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The Disruption of
Biological Rhythms
Topic 4 ­ Biological Rhythms…read more

Slide 2

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Night Work AO1
· Night work leads to people rhythms being reversed as they would sleep in the
day and work at night.
· This is going against all external cues
· This makes them.... ....Sleep Deprived ....more likely to get
· Tiley and Wilkinson ­ organ disease
....Less Alert daytime sleep is 1-2 hours · Knuttson et al
Boivin (1996) ­ nightworkers shorter and REM is also (1986) ­ people in
have a circadian trough of affected shift work for 15
low alertness during their · Sleeping is harder in the years are 3x more
shift. It happens between day because its noisy and likely to develop
midnight (because cortisol its daytime heart disease
is at its lowest) and 4am · Sleep is also of lower · Martino et al
(where body temperature is quality in the day (2008) Shift work is
at its lowest) · This makes it hard for linked to kidney
night shift workers to stay disease.
awake…read more

Slide 3

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Night Work AO2
Other Shift work factors
· The effects of shift work aren't just because of the disruption of the individuals
biological rhythms
· It might be because of the lack of sleep from unusual sleep times
· They also experience social disruption
Solomon (1993) ­ divorce rates could be as high as 60% among shift workers
This suggests that other factors such as the stress of social disruption can
lead to the higher risk of organ diseases in night workers…read more

Slide 4

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Night Work AO2
Rotating shifts are bad
Gold et al (1992) ­ when shifts rotate and change every few
days more problems occur
Unchanging shifts are less disruptive because the individual
can then create a new sleep-wake pattern
This suggests that workplaces should consider permanent rotas with
fixed shifts for employees…read more

Slide 5

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Night Work AO2
Forward Rotating shifts are good
Bambra et al (2008) ­ phase delay rotation is easier e.g. if
someone works mornings on the first week, afternoons on the
second week and evenings on the third week
Faster shift rotation i.e. every few day rather than every week =
better for work life balance
This criticizes Gold and suggests an alternative that can be used by
workplaces. This has real world applications because the health of
employees is involved.…read more

Slide 6

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Jet Lag AO1
· Jet lag is the physiological effects of disrupted circadian rhythms
· The dorsal part of the SCN takes several cycles to resynchronise to large time changes
Winter et al (2008) ­ it takes a day to adjust to each hour of time change
· Jet lag....
...Causes Lowered Performance ...Has individual differences
· There have been studies on American baseball teams · Jet lags disruption varies across
who travel to play league games individuals
· The American west coast is 3 hours behind the east
coast · It's possible that those whose
East coast teams: phase delay when playing on west circadian rhythms change less
coast cope better
West coast teams: phase advance when playing on east
coast · Reinberg et al (1984) ­ happy shift
· Recht et al ­ phase delays have a bigger effect on workers had unchanging rhythms.
performance. Those who couldn't cope with shift
· Teams with phase delay have fewer wins than teams work had changing rhythms
with phase advance…read more

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