Men More Likely to Fall Asleep While Driving
According to a recent survey conducted by the road safety charity Brake, one in fourteen drivers admits to actually falling asleep while driving. Falling asleep at the wheel is very dangerous and is the cause of accidents and even deaths. The survey found that men are twice as likely as women to fall asleep while driving. There are many ways to prevent accidents caused by drowsy driving. One of the most common signs of falling asleep is a ‘warning nod’. A warning nod is when your head nods while you are driving tired. Men are more likely than women to ignore the nodding, in fact forty-five percent of men admitted to continuing to driving even though they had experienced head nodding. In contrast, twenty-two percent of women admitted to driving while sleepy.
While there is no explanation why men are more likely to make this destructive decision, it is widely-accepted that drivers do not fall asleep at the wheel without experiencing some warning signs. If you are driving and notice any of the following drowsy driving signs, it is important to rest or change drivers. These signs include: yawning, blinking frequently, forgetfulness (cannot remember the past few miles driven), missing your exit, drifting from your lane or across a median, hitting a rumble strip on the side of the road, or trouble keeping your head up. Both men and women should stay aware of their body’s signals concerning drowsiness while you are driving.
Brake’s spokeswoman Julie Townsend said, “Brake urges all drivers to get a good night’s sleep, take regular breaks from driving every two hours, and never to carry on driving when they are tired.” Being sleepy affects every driver’s ability to drive safely even if the driver does not completely fall asleep at the wheel. According to the Center for Disease Control, drowsy driving slows reaction times, affects a driver’s ability to make decisions, and makes drivers less attentive.
It is important to listen to the signs your body is giving you concerning drowsiness. The Institute of Advanced Motorists’ director of policy and research, Neil Grieg says, “Ignoring the signs can be potentially fatal as sleep-related crashes commonly involve leaving the road and hitting a solid object at high speeds.”
There are certain groups of people more likely to drive drowsy including commercial drivers, shift workers, drivers with untreated sleep disorders, sedating medication, and drivers that have not gotten adequate sleep. The best advice concerning drowsy driving was from Julie Townsend. She said, “Ultimately, it’s better to get home to your loved ones a bit later than never getting there at all.”
If you believe you may have a sleep disorder or your quality of sleep is making you a drowsy driver, contact the professionals at FusionSleep to schedule a consultation. We will help you improve your quality of sleep and improve your health.