Help a new nurse transition to the night shift?
June 25, 2012 2:05 PM Subscribe
I'm a new nurse and was offered a night position (11-7) at an awesome facility. Please give me tips for working the third shift!
posted by anonymous to work & money (16 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
I'm a brand-new LPN (!!) and I've applied to a few long term care facilities.
I've been offered the day shift at one nursing home, but I would have 20 patients and it is a really, really unpleasant place. I got a terrible vibe when I went in there. The pay is also not great. However, the hours (645am-315pm are great).
I also got an offer for the night shift at the Ritz Carlton of nursing homes in my area. It's a coveted full-time position and pays $10/hr more than the other position. I will be trained on the day shift as well as the night shift, and I will not be the only LPN on at night.
The problem is that I've never worked nights. Right now I wake up around 8am and fall asleep around 11pm, and this is pretty typical for me. I live with my fiance and he is very much a morning person. He struggles to stay awake past 9pm and is up at 430am. The position is five nights a week and I'm worried that I will turn into an insomniac and never see my fiance. I also am training for a marathon and everyone I talked to says that I will gain 20 lbs on the night shift. This is obviously all in my control, but I imagine squeezing in the gym would be difficult.
I feel like as a new nurse I need to "pay my dues" and work the night shift. I'm also kind of intrigued by it and want to see if I can do it. My teachers say that it is generally more relaxed but when there is an emergency it's all on you. It also seems like, if I fall asleep by 9am, my fiance can wake me up at 5 when he gets home and we can spend the evening together.
Another plus is that the longest I see myself working here is 1.5 years, as in the fall I will be part-time when I'm in school to get my RN. Once I have my RN I will apply for med/surg jobs at local hospitals.
For those of you who work the night shift:
Do you ever transition back to a regular sleep schedule for your nights off?
How do you manage to spending time with your loved ones?
How long did it take you to get in the habit of falling asleep during the day?
Is it tough to squeeze in exercise?
Nurses: how does the night shift differ from the day shift, at a nursing home?
Thanks so much for your help. I am kind of agonizing over this decision.