The Dangers of Drowsy Driving

It almost seems to be a daily occurrence that on my morning commutes to work I encounter someone who I would label as “a bad driver,” and I’m positive that I’m not the only one who feels this way. On a typical morning I’ll see anything ranging from texting, to shaving, to eating breakfast, to doing makeup and the list goes on and on. Now perhaps you’ve been a culprit of one of these driver distractions, but surely some of the things that I just listed made you think to yourself: “Do people really do that?” For the most part, these distractions are the poor choices of a select few, but what if there is something that the majority of us do, despite its inherent risks? According to a poll by the National Sleep Foundation, there is: drowsy driving.

Drowsy driving is just another symptom of sleep disordered breathing, but it can happen to anyone who hasn’t gotten enough rest before getting behind the wheel of a car. The research gathered by the National Sleep Foundation supports this, showing that 60% of Americans have driven while overtired in the past year, and a terrifying 37% have actually fallen asleep while driving! Often times we think of drinking before driving as the worst possible decision that someone could make, but drowsy driving is not all that different. A tired driver is likely to be equally impaired as a drunk driver, with blurred vision, lack of focus, and decreased reaction time all being common traits.

Unfortunately the open-road is a place where our environment is relatively uncontrollable, but you can do your part by making sure that you’re not overtired before plunking into the driver’s seat. It only takes one bad decision to endanger your life and the lives of others, so take it upon yourself to make sure that you’re getting a good night’s sleep every night, and especially on nights before a long day of driving. And when it comes to getting that deep, fulfilling sleep, as always Sleepnet is happy to help.