One of the predictors of heart disease is stress. Among other predictors include working for long hours. One study finds that working for long hours can cause irregular heart rhythm, which is linked to stroke and other heart health issues.
The researchers say that those working 55 hours per week are more likely to develop atrial fibrillation than those who work 40 hours per week. Atrial fibrillation is an irregular heart rhythm, which can eventually result to many heart issues.
The study monitors nearly 85,500 men and women. Those who are working long hours have 40% more likely to develop atrial fibrillation. In a press release, it says that for every 1000 people in the study;
…an extra 5.2 cases of atrial fibrillation occurred among those working long hours during the ten-year follow-up.
Lead researcher Professor Mika Kivimaki says in the press release;
These findings show that long working hours are associated with an increased risk of atrial fibrillation, the most common cardiac arrhythmia. This could be one of the mechanisms that explain the previously observed increased risk of stroke among those working long hours. Atrial fibrillation is known to contribute to the development of stroke, but also other adverse health outcomes, such as heart failure and stroke-related dementia.
Just like some studies, this study has limitations, too. The working hours of the participants were only evaluated when the started. Additionally, the type of job for the participants in the study was not recorded.
Moreover, some factors not explored in the study include night shifts and irregular working hours.
This study somewhat a supports the previous findings by the researchers at the Ohio State University. In this study, researcher Allard Dembe says that individuals who work long hours for many years have a higher risk of chronic disease later in life.
This shows that working long hours is not really good for the body. Occasional workaholics may be fine but consistent working for long hours have declining effect on health. Dembe adds that the link between long hours of work and disease seems to affect men a bit but more apparent in women.
Regardless, the effect is similar. It’s not healthy. Therefore, workaholics, it’s time to think about your health.
Unhealthy Effects of Night Shifts
Earlier we’ve mentioned night shift. And, although not recorded in the recent study as one of the factors of heart disease, the previous study found it can.