Instances of drowsy driving, or driver fatigue, are often as deadly as driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. According to the National Safety Council, about 40% of drivers confess to falling asleep while driving at some point in their lives.

Once you understand which factors may contribute to this issue, you may reduce the odds of causing a car accident and injuries to yourself, your passengers and other drivers.

A lack of proper sleep

The risk of causing a motor vehicle accident can increase as the quality of sleep you get falls. A number of factors could interrupt a good night’s sleep, including:

  • Stress
  • Drinking caffeinated beverages
  • Snoring

Adults require at least seven hours of quality sleep time to remain alert and free of brain fog during the day, so maintaining a sleep schedule and your sleep hygiene can help you avoid falling asleep behind the wheel. Going to bed at the same time each night, including weekends, may help you establish a better sleep pattern.

Prescription/OTC medications

Many different types of medicine can cause you to feel drowsy, even those sold over the counter at a local pharmacy. Cold and flu products are often the most common culprits, as people often fail to read the precautions or disregard them because driving is a necessity. If you are sensitive to these medications or take prescription drugs, discussing any drowsy side effects with your pharmacist could reduce the chances of you falling asleep while driving.

Drowsy driving crashes cause fatalities and serious injuries each year. While some new initiatives may reduce the numbers, individual drivers must take responsibility for maintaining alertness when they are behind the wheel in Albuquerque and throughout the United States.