Health experts have warned that many of the youths working in BPO firms working continuously in night shifts may undergo premature ageing.
The experts explained that working continually on night shifts takes a serious toll on the health of the youth. Dr Lim Li Ling, Deputy Director, a specialist in Neurophysiology, sleep disorders unit, Singapore General Hospital, said, "Heavy food during night, skipping breakfast, eating lunch in the evening and other such irregular habits would adversely affect their health."
Dr Ling who is currently in Chennai for a seminar also mentioned that besides premature aging the overall performance of the individual could also be affected due to the lack of proper sleep. She said, "Since, they are sleep-deprived, their efficiency and alertness are less compared to those who sleep sufficiently. Their concentration is hindered due to lack of sleep." She further added that such people also faced the problem of frequent headaches, fatigue, and sleepiness with diminished reflexes.
She stated that even though, they are much talked off and are often the source of jealousy for the huge pay packet they receive, they are actually paying a 'heavy price' by risking their health. In total agreement with what she had stated, Dr Prithakachari, a neurology specialist, said, "Youths working in BPOs lose their ability to enjoy and become irritable and unsociable." Dr N Ramakrishnan, director, Nithra Institute of Sleep Sciences here, pointed out that sleep deprivation led to accidents when affected people drive.
Increasing awareness on this has already caught momentum in the US and European countries, with proper care being given to younger people who are on frequent night duties being given proper rest with sufficient intervals.