(CNN) – We’ve read and heard about studies that say working long hours or even overnight hours can be harmful to your health.
A new study sought to find out the best work schedule based on your age.
Our biological clock has a way of regulating how alert and how sleepy we get over a 24-hour period.
And because that cycle can change as we age, working certain times of the day or night can jeopardize your health.
For teens and young adults: later may be better.
According to Dr. Jess Shatkin, a psychiatrist at New York University, adolescents tend to go to bed later and wake up earlier because they release melatonin – a hormone linked to our biological clock – later in the night than adults do.
Shatkin says young adults shouldn’t start school or work earlier than 9:00am or 10:00am.
For adults in their 20’s and 30’s: consistency is key.
Studies show the best type of work schedule for people in this group should reflect the person’s lifestyle preferences, whether an early bird or night owl.
Deviating from a regular schedule can have a negative impact on health.
And for the 40 and older crowd: less is more.
A study published by the Melbourne Institute suggests that a three-day work week could be best for adults over 40.
Researchers also found that working about 25 hours a week can improve cognitive performance but working more than 25 hours can have the opposite effect.