Fatigue can present serious risks for farmers. Fatigue is when you feel like you are always tired. It’s not the same as feeling drowsy, or tired after a busy day. It’s more a feeling of pushing yourself through the day, every day.
Farmers, particularly during busy times of the year, often work long hours, don’t have time to unwind and then have problems sleeping when they do get to bed. This cycle can lead to fatigue; it can also be caused by many other issues.
Keep in touch
Farmers often work alone, combined with fatigue, this can be a dangerous combination. You need to keep in touch.
Every farm business should have reliable communications equipment and a regular system of checking on isolated workers, as well as an emergency plan, should anyone come to harm.
Working on a farm can be dangerous and fatigue can lead to accidents. Remember to look after your body as well as your farm.
Some symptoms of fatigue include:
- Headaches, dizziness, blurry vision
- Slow reflexes and reactions, poor concentration
- Feeling irritable, moody and short tempered
- Aching, weak muscles
- Feeling tired all over or sleepy
Fatigue can be caused by:
- Not getting enough sleep
- Working long hours eg during harvesting
- Not eating well
- Grief and loss
- Some illnesses or medications
- Alcohol or drug use
If you are sleeping and eating well but still feel constantly tired, it’s important to seek medical advice because it could be caused by an undiagnosed illness which requires treatment.
Tips that may help
- Aim for a good night’s sleep every night
- Have reliable communications equipment and a regular system to check isolated workers
- Get some regular physical exercise
- Eat healthy food and drink plenty of water
- Limit or avoid alcohol and other drugs
- Reduce caffeine intake (tea, coffee, cola etc)