Residency

Ask the expert: How can we convey to residents the importance of getting adequate rest during their time off?

Residency Program Insider, July 12, 2011

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Not only do programs need to educate residents about the negative effects of sleep deprivation, they need to instill in residents the responsibility for getting adequate rest and give them strategies for doing so.

Studies have shown that physicians don't get much more sleep when their hours at the hospital are reduced. It's imperative for programs to teach residents that they're responsible for getting adequate sleep during their time off so they can be fit for duty.

Long duty hours aren't the only thing that can lead to sleep deprivation. Other circumstances, such as a new baby who cries throughout the night, could make it difficult for a resident to get adequate sleep.
Strategies programs can teach residents to get enough sleep include:

  • Going to sleep and waking up at a consistent time, when possible
  • Avoiding heavy meals or exercise s before bedtime
  • Sleeping in a cool, dark room
  • Protecting sleep time by turning off pagers and cell phones

 
This week’s question and answer are from Residency Program Alert.
 



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