Law Office Of

Donald W. Bedell

Schedule Your Free Legal Consultation

Law Office Of

Donald W. Bedell
Free Consults Available

More than 25 years of trial success

Less common drowsy driving risk factors

On Behalf of | Apr 15, 2024 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

Drowsy driving is a serious issue that can result in accidents, injuries and even fatalities. While most people are aware of the common risk factors, such as lack of sleep and driving at night, some lesser-known factors can also contribute to drowsy driving.

It is very important for drivers to understand these less common risk factors to stay safe on the road.

Sleep disorders and medication

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, drowsy driving collisions claimed 684 lives throughout 2021. Sleep disorders such as sleep apnea, narcolepsy and insomnia can significantly increase the risk of drowsy driving. People with these conditions may experience excessive daytime sleepiness, difficulty staying awake and poor sleep quality, all of which can impair their driving abilities.

Certain medications, both prescription and over-the-counter, can cause drowsiness as a side effect. Sedating medications such as antihistamines, antidepressants and muscle relaxants can impair your alertness and reaction time while driving. It is important to read the labels of your medications carefully and consult with your healthcare provider if you experience drowsiness as a side effect.

Health conditions, diet and stress

Health conditions such as anemia, diabetes and thyroid disorders can cause fatigue and drowsiness, making it unsafe to drive. What you eat and drink can also affect your alertness and energy levels while driving. A diet high in processed foods, sugar and caffeine can lead to energy crashes and drowsiness, especially during long drives. Dehydration can also cause fatigue and impair your cognitive function.

Remember, if you are feeling tired or drowsy while driving, it is always better to pull over and rest than to risk your safety and the safety of others on the road.