exogenous rhythm

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Definition - What does exogenous rhythm mean?

Exogenous rhythm refers to environmental factors that influence natural circadian rhythm cycles within a twenty-four period including light exposure, temperature, ambient noise, regular diet, different time zones, traumatic events, injuries, and occupational stress. The body’s biorhythms respond to light absorption via light-sensitive cells in the retina, triggering physiological cues that correspond to sleep/wake cycles that, if misaligned, can disrupt sleep patterns.

SureHire explains exogenous rhythm

Exogenous rhythms are crucial determinants in the quality and quantity of sleep an individual receives on a daily basis. Career and familial obligations often carry stressful implications that cause dramatic shifts with circadian rhythm cycles where individuals can incur frequent sleep disturbances. Many people can control environmental conditions and situations associated with lifestyle habits that contribute to sleep fragmentation, incidentally, compromising deep sleep (slow wave cycles) stages and rapid eye movement (REM) sleep stage cycles. For instance, alcohol is a depressant that induces sleep, but it can also exacerbate symptoms of sleep apnea to the extent that insomnia can ensue.

Sleep environment variables involving light, noise, and temperature often reflect the individual’s preference, but it can also mean the difference between restorative sleep or excessive daytime sleepiness. Rotating shifts or frequent traveling is a common requirement for employees where time zone lapses and alternating daytime/nighttime schedules interfere with otherwise normal biorhythms. Consequently, many industrial trades entail alertness, concentration, and coordination in recognizing public health and safety guidelines that dictate job performance, especially, law enforcement, healthcare, and transportation.

In the workplace, loud noise (decibel) levels, poor ergonomic control measures, defective ventilation system units, and excessive job demands are exogenous rhythm factors that can compromise sleep patterns. Sleep deprivation remains a prevalent issue for employers in which the incident rate for accidents and injuries poses liabilities. Employers can install ample lighting in a facility as a means to promote wakeful states against otherwise nocturnal (nightly) occasions to maximize job productivity.

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