In our daily routine, most traffic accidents are caused by extreme tiredness and drowsiness, due to which the driver unconsciously loses control of the vehicle, which leads to the accident.
The main cause of drowsiness is a lack of sleep. A study conducted on driving without rest and sleep deprivation states that it is just like driving after consuming alcohol.
According to the ‘Sleep Foundation’ website, a person sitting in the driver’s seat should be well aware of how dangerous sleep deprivation is and how serious its consequences can be.
It is imperative to avoid alcohol or sleeping pills before going on a long drive. Also, get adequate sleep so that the state of drowsiness does not worsen.
What causes drowsiness while driving?
Research has shown that driving while sleep-deprived is similar to driving under the influence of alcohol. According to scientific research, the condition of a driver who has been awake for 24 hours is similar to that of an alcoholic. In most states, having a blood alcohol content of more than 0.10% is a criminal offence. Similarly, lack of sleep leads to a disconnection between the brain and human senses, which can lead to an accident.
Although anyone can suffer from insufficient sleep. Certain individuals, as described in the following lines, should take special precautions regarding the effects of sleepiness:
Commercial Trailer Heavy Duty Vehicle Driver
Special groups of shift workers who are used to working night shifts or long shifts.
People suffering from lack of sleep or breathing problems. People who take sedatives that cause drowsiness
Addition, certain hours of the day and night can also cause accidents. In which some people are more sleepy, that time is after noon and between 12:00 pm and 6:00 am. In fact, it is an internal mechanism that regulates sleep, appetite and bodily functions.
Symptoms of drowsy driving:
Frequent blinking and yawning.
Difficulty keeping the head straight
Don’t forget the distance travelled.
Disregarding exit signs posted on the highway
Getting off the track and swinging the car left and right
Sudden and partial sleep is dangerous enough to affect the driver’s mind while driving. Which can last as little as 5 seconds, during which the driver of a car travelling at a speed of 55 miles per hour travels 100 yards before the driver wakes up from the temporary sleep.
What to do if you fall asleep while driving?
If you become very drowsy while driving and your head starts to feel heavy. Then immediately park the car at any suitable place and relax for at least 20 minutes. So that you can get rid of the drowsy mind and get refreshed.
It is true that coffee or caffeinated drinks provide temporary energy to the body. When the effects of caffeine in the body are over, the brain starts to feel drowsy again. In this case, park the car at a suitable place, relax a little and drink a cup or two of coffee to refresh yourself.
Get adequate sleep:
In general, people between the ages of 18 and 64 need at least 7 hours of continuous and adequate sleep a day. According to the National Library of Medicine, the National Centre for Biotechnology Information, and the National Centre for Biotechnology and Health, people age 65 and older should get at least 7 hours of sleep.
For teenagers who are legally allowed to drive, the sleep duration is set at 8 to 10 hours in 24 hours.
Avoid driving during periods of severe drowsiness:
Do not drive on a long route during times when the brain is drowsy, i.e., after noon and from midnight to 6 a.m. These are the times when accidents occur due to drowsiness. The symptoms of sleep apnea should never be ignored. Be aware of other drivers as well.
Improve sleep system:
Restful and sound sleep is very important to maintain physical energy. According to natural principles, nighttime is reserved for sleeping. A restful sleep taken during this time keeps you fresh throughout the day, so it is better to improve your sleep system to stay physically energetic.
For better and restful sleep:
Set sleep times: It is important that you set your sleep time and wake up accordingly every day, whether it is the weekend or travel.
Sleeping place: The best place to sleep is a quiet room that is slightly dark and has a suitable temperature. Experts say that the ideal room temperature is 65 degrees Fahrenheit, while for some people, 67 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit is suitable.
Keep electronic devices out of the room. Do not keep smart mobile phones, laptops, tablets, etc. in the bedroom as they all emit blue light, which can disturb your restful sleep. Do not use any such device for at least 30 minutes before going to bed.
Avoiding coffee before going to sleep: Remember that caffeinated drinks always disturb sleep, so be careful not to consume such drinks before going to sleep. Also, avoid other drinks at bedtime, as this may make you need to go to the bathroom in your sleep.
If 20 minutes have passed since you laid in bed and you have not fallen asleep, get up and go to another part of the house and stay there until you start to feel sleepy. When you feel sleepy, immediately go to the bedroom and lie down on the bed.
Healthy Habits: To maintain physical health, arrange daily exercise and adopt healthy eating habits.
Consult a doctor: If you have sleep problems despite following the above methods, do not hesitate to consult a doctor.