Taking a road trip is an exciting way to travel, but make sure that sleep is on the agenda. Drowsy driving causes about 72,000 car accidents each year, and being sleepy at the wheel can be just as dangerous as driving while drunk. What many people don’t know is that you don’t need to be overly exhausted to put yourself—and others—at risk: Missing just one to two hours of sleep increases the chance of a crash.
Luckily, smart strategies can keep you safe. Take into account what time of day you’re traveling, and try to hit the road when you feel most alert. Drowsy driving accidents are more likely to occur early in the morning, during the midafternoon, and late at night. Also, be sure to consider what medications you’re on, since lost sleep isn’t the only risk factor. Taking drugs that have sedating side effects, such as some antihistamines, can up the chance that you’ll lose control on the road—as can having an untreated sleep disorder like sleep apnea.
You should also make sure to book plenty of stops throughout your road trip so that you can get a good night’s sleep, and take full advantage of rest areas and other locations where you can pull over and nap. If you’re traveling with someone else, take turns driving and keep an eye out for the following warning signs, which may indicate that you’re too tired to drive:
- Not being able to keep your eyes open
- Having wandering thoughts that cause you to lose focus on driving
- Missing road signs or driving past your turn
- Driving too close to the car in front of you
- Drifting into other lanes
The right head support can greatly improve how comfortable you feel in bed.Learn more about how these medical devices can make a big difference in nighttime comfort for people with breathing issues.Sleep Apnea is a sleep disorder in which breathing is briefly and repeatedly interrupted during sleep. Learn how to cope...A frequent need to get up and go to the bathroom to urinate at night is called nocturia. It differs...Nearly one-quarter of all workers have shifts that are not during the daytime, and more than two-thirds of these workers...Have you ever wanted to know what happens to your body during menstruation? The latest infographic from the National Sleep...The Electronics and Sleep infographic highlights how technology affects the modern family and how parents can help design a sleep...Orexin receptor antagonists: A new class of sleeping pill Find out more about orexin, and a new type of sleep...Great news: more than three-fourths (76%) of those surveyed say that they had a good night’s sleep at least a...How you feel about the sleep you get every night is known as sleep satisfaction. Unlike sleep quantity (which objectively...