Check out to know tips to avoid sleepiness while driving.
Driving requires alertness and great focus. It is a very complex activity that requires lots of small but very crucial split decisions every passing second. You need to give your 101% attention on the road while you're in control of the steering wheel. But it is sometimes unavoidable to feel a little bit tired and sleepy especially when we’re heading home from a tiring work or driving back from a long trip. Even if you are awake, your brain might not function optimally to make and handle the right choices and decisions.
The good news is, we can actually avoid the sleepiness while driving. Philcarnews.com prepared some helpful tips on how to prevent sleepiness on the road.
When driving, we tend to fight the tiredness just so we can get to our destination as soon as we can. The following are some signs that you need to pull over. This indicates that you're too tired to drive and it’s time to rest.
- Frequent blinking, heavy eyelids and/or difficulty focusing
- Disconnected or wandering thoughts also called daydreaming
- Missing traffic signs and exits, Forgetting the last miles driven
- Rubbing your eyes and/or yawning repeatedly
- Having trouble to keep your head up
- Tailgating, drifting lanes, and/or hitting the shoulder rumble strip
- Feeling irritable and restless
Follow these handy tips to avoid drowsiness during the ride:
1. Take a nap before driving
A short 20 minutes of sleep can help you recharge and ready your mind before hitting the road. If you’re going on a long trip, a 20-minute nap or less than an hour sleep can make a huge difference. It can already provide you the needed rest you need to function and stay alert during the whole drive.
A short 20 minutes of sleep can help you recharge and ready your mind before hitting the road
2. Have a complete and healthy meal
We all know that foods provide us energy for the whole day. The same goes when we’re driving. Food provides the needed energy of the body to sustain itself. Before driving, eat a complete and healthy meal. Choose energy-giving foods which will provide the power you need to stay alert and awake during the whole drive.
It is recommended to go for complex protein and carbohydrates. Lean protein such as chicken, turkey and whole grains keeps you alert while driving for long hours. You have to avoid foods that have processed carbs and high sugar content like convenience foods from fast foods. These types of foods aren't a good provider of energy since they'll only provide short-lived energy.
Lean protein such as chicken, turkey and whole grains keeps you alert while driving for long hours
3. Take vitamins
Taking vitamins C and B will provide you energy. You can take either of the two after a healthy meal. Taking vitamins C or B will prevent drowsiness during the long drive. To be safe, ask your doctor regarding the right dosage for you. Make sure that the vitamins you will be taking will not interfere with your existing medication/s.
Taking vitamins C and B will provide you energy
4. Prefer the right time for driving
If you have the option to choose which time you would prefer driving, choose the time when you are most energetic. Keep an eye on your body’s natural energy dips and spikes for the whole day, and then drive when you feel at most energetic.
If you have the option to choose which time you would prefer driving, choose the time when you are most energetic
5. Drink Caffeine
One cup of coffee has about 75mg of caffeine. A cup of coffee is enough to keep you awake and alert for a short time while driving. If you're starting to feel tired, having a cup of coffee will provide you with an additional jolt to keep you going.
While driving, keep an eye for along-the-road coffee shops or filling stations. Pull over at any of these establishments then drink a cup of coffee when you start to feel tired. Additionally, you can stretch your legs as well when outside the car.
6. Chew gum
Chew gum while driving. Chewing gum keeps your mouth busy. It can actually help you stay awake and focus especially if there’s something that occupies your mind. To be sure, bring a pack or two of chewing gums on long trips. If you're starting to feel sleepy, chew some chewing gum.
Prefer sugar-free gum. Gums with too much sugar can actually cause you to feel more tired compared to what you feel before.
7. Try a mid-drive nap
If you’re really sleepy while driving, it’s okay to pull over then take a nap. A 15 to 20 minutes nap can already recharge and refresh your brain, which gives you enough stamina you'll need during the drive. Look for a safe place you can pull-over to rest and nap for 15-20 minutes.
The best place to take a short nap is far enough from the main highway where you’ll be safe from the oncoming traffic. For your safety, you should pick a place that isn’t too isolated like car parks near the filling station. Also remember to set an alarm so you wouldn’t oversleep.
8. Travel with a companion if you can
If you’re going on a long trip for hours, tag someone along if possible. Having company while driving can keep you awake and alert for more hours. You can also take turns in driving. So that, when you feel really drowsy or tired, you can ask your companion to drive while you rest.
If you’re going on a long trip for hours, tag someone along if possible
9. Look for media that will keep you entertained
Try to listen to something like music, podcast, tapes, and radio shows that will keep you entertained and focused. Just remember that when you listen to music for the whole drive, it causes you to zone out. So, instead of doing that, listen to a podcast, radio shows, and the likes. Doing so will help you focus on the show or words that can keep your mind occupied, thus preventing you from falling asleep.
10. Do not drink alcoholic beverages before driving
Take note that even small amounts of alcohol can cause drowsiness. It is just right to avoid any alcoholic beverages before you drive. It'll not only cause you to be sleepy, but you can also get caught since drunk driving or driving under the influence of alcohol is strictly prohibited.
Here are some of the best ways to combat sleepiness while driving. But the most effective way is to have a good sleep before you hit the road. Sleepiness and unavoidable when you're from a tiring job or work, so it is best to be aware of the different steps to fight off sleepiness while driving.
>>> Click to get more helpful tips and advice for safe driving
Source: Hanna Miel Sanchez