Fighting stress onboard is both challenging and crucial. Although much of our everyday stress can be useful in a way of noticing a problem or the pressures that we face, triggering us to act, in general, repeated and prolonged stress may have negative effects on our mental health. Focusing on seafarers’ safety and wellness onboard, a self-help guide, issued previously by ISWAN in cooperation with the Shipowners’ Club, provides practical tips to seafarers to better deal with stress and be able to recognize its symptoms and face a stressful situation.
wellness at sea
Missing a night of sleep isn’t uncommon but does affect you. How long an individual is awake affects sleepiness and consequently fatigue levels. The longer an individual has been awake, the poorer his/her performance.
The amount of sleep we need each day will change over the course of our life. On average an adult aged 18 years or older needs 7–8 hours a day, however, sleep needs vary from person to person. Lack of sleep and poor quality of sleep and rest can cause fatigue, which is considered as the silent risk factor for seafarers.
Staying fit has numerous health benefits, as it makes us physically and mentally stronger. Seafarers are not an exception and the Seafarers’ Health Information Programme published a guide containing examples of on board exercises.
A research published in the International Maritime Health journal alerts that automated onboard tasks for seafarers may reduce attention and vigilance, increase the risk of accidents, and lead to higher levels of smoking, drinking, eating disorders and addictive behaviours amongst crew members.
Every 40 seconds, someone in the world loses their life to suicide, a figure which could justify a global interest in a greater awareness on mental health issues. On the occasion of the World Mental Health Day 2019 celebrated today, the World Health Organization sheds a focus on suicide prevention.
Good relationships with close family members, friends or others are important. Accepting help and support from those who care about you and will listen to you strengthens resilience. Some people find that being active in civic groups, faith-based organizations or other local groups provides social support and can help with reclaiming hope. Assisting others in their time of need also can benefit the helper.
An effective water management plan is vital for seafarers’ health onboard to ensure that the quality of the potable water follows all hygiene conditions. In this context, there are several important factors that need to be considered in terms of the quality of potable water onboard as well as its effective storage and distribution.
Wellness is currently a prominent topic for discussion within the maritime industry; having seafarers who feel engaged and positive is essential to boost morale onboard, and ensure that the focus is on operational excellence and safety. However, let’s not forget the employees working ashore, who also need to work in a healthy working environment where they feel motivated and excited with their role.
Making decisions is a part of life; either at work place or home, during socializing and adverse situations, all individuals, either consciously or subconsciously, are asked to take decisions. These could be personal or professional, important, radical or with minimum effect to our daily life.
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