This is a sponsored post from The National Sleep Foundation. All opinions and personal stories are mine!
When I was in college, I would sometimes drive home (a 2 hour trip) late at night. Because of this, I will admit that I did some drowsy driving back then. I was young and didn’t consider the consequences. I can remember nodding at the wheel just a bit once or twice, but luckily I made it home safe and sound every drive.
Now, whenever I need to go somewhere, I consider the possible dangers of drowsy driving. I have more than just me to think about, and I couldn’t imagine how I would feel if something happened to my two precious boys due to me driving when drowsy.
When you’ve been on the road for hours, or you are out later than usual, it’s vital that you know how to spot the common signs of driving drowsy. There are a few of them, so you shouldn’t have to guess whether or not you are too tired to drive. Once they start happening, you must take notice to keep you, your passengers, and others on the the road safe.
What to Do When Driving Drowsy
If you feel you have one or more signs of drowsy driving, it’s imperative that do something about it. Staying on the road is very dangerous.
- If you have a licensed passenger, exchange seats with them. Even if you don’t like to be the rider or you are in your own vehicle, this is a much safer option!
- When driving alone, stop for a short nap. You don’t have to find a hotel and stay the night, but a brief 30 minute lap in a Walmart parking lot beats having an accident on your journey!
- Drinking caffeine can help you stay alert if you are almost to your destination. Drink some coffee so you don’t get drowsy.
How to Prevent Drowsy Driving
Before you hit the road, there are some ways you can eliminate the possibility of drowsy driving.
My primary recommendation is getting enough sleep the night before you hit the road. A good night’s sleep can be achieved by turning off all electronics an hour before bed, taking a relaxing bath, and sleeping with a fan and/or white noise machine.
Drowsy Driving Prevention Week
Driving when tired has become such a problem that November 2-9 is Drowsy Driving Prevention Week. You can get involved by taking the Drowsy Driving Pledge, declaring that you will look for signs of drowsy driving and do something if those signs should ever arise.