Drowsy Driving is Unsafe
Did you know that drowsy driving can be as dangerous as drunk driving? According to the National Sleep Foundation’s Sleep in America poll, 60% of Americans have driven while feeling sleepy and 37% admit to having fallen asleep at the wheel. With summer vacations just around the corner, it is important to know if you are being safe while you are on the road. You can prevent an accident by being safe in your driving habits and seeking the care of sleep doctors if you believe you have a condition.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is taking on more efforts to combat drowsy driving, especially in times of the year where driving on highways is at its highest. Their “Wake Up and Get Some Sleep” campaign was created to increase awareness of drowsy driving. To prevent drowsy driving, they recommend positive sleep habits to impact you for a lifetime. These tips to combat sleepiness and drowsy driving include:
- Making Your Bedroom Dark
- Sleeping at the Same Time Every Day
- Lowering Your Home Thermostat Before Sleeping
- Avoiding Caffeine a Few Hours Before Bedtime
- Avoiding Alcohol a Few Hours Before Bedtime
- Knowing the Side Effects of Medicine You Take
- Putting Your Cell Phone on Silent
- Develop a Sleep Ritual to Unwind Before Bed
When you drive and travel on vacation, we recommend you follow specific protocols when on the road. Everything from getting the right amount of sleep to scheduling breaks along the way protects your safety on the road. Before you drive we recommend you take precautions like scheduling your drive when you are normally awake, not taking any sedating medication, and not driving alone especially at night on boring roads.
Know your body’s signs of drowsy driving so when you are on the road, you are able to take a break and be safe not only to yourself but to innocent drivers on the road. Stop driving if you notice:
- Constant Yawning
- Struggling to Keep Eyes Open
- Wandering Thoughts
- Missing Important Road Signs
- Running on the Road Shoulder
- Ending up Too Close to Nearby Cares
- Drifting into Other Lanes
- Nodding Off
One of the most common sleep disorders that occur with adult drivers is sleep apnea. It is estimated that 80 to 90 percent of sleep apnea cases go undiagnosed. If you are not aware you have this condition, you are significantly more likely to experience daytime sleepiness which leads to a higher chance of deadly accidents.
Once you have tried to better your sleep habits and you are still feeling drowsy, it is time to schedule an appointment with a sleep doctor. Any underlying disorders need to be taken care of before you are involved in an accident or you experience any health complications. The doctors at FusionSleep are qualified to help you and correct whatever problem is causing your daytime drowsiness. If sleep apnea is diagnosed, this condition is entirely treatable. Schedule an appointment with FusionSleep today.