Tips for Avoiding Drowsy Driving
Approximately 60 percent of drivers in the United States have admitted to regularly driving when they are feeling sleepy or tired, and a startling 37 percent have admitted that they have actually fallen asleep when they were driving. If you are a family caregiver, particularly one who is in the sandwich generation, it is likely that you have been in this position before. Your schedule is busy and you need to manage all of the tasks in one day. You have responsibilities from early in the morning until late at night. Your parent lives at a distance which means long drives to and from their home. Whatever the reason, if you find yourself driving while tired, you are putting yourself and everyone else on the road at risk. Sleepiness impairs your ability to drive in a wide variety of ways, including decreasing vision and judgment, reducing short term memory, slowing reaction time, and increasing aggressive behaviors. Avoiding drowsy driving is an important part of ensuring that you stay safe and that you continue to be there for the people who rely on you.
Use these tips to avoid drowsy driving:
- Create carpools so that you can reduce the amount that you are driving.
- Be sure that you get enough sleep each night and stick to a sleep schedule to reduce sleepiness and grogginess.
- Utilize the services of a home care provider to handle some of your parent’s care needs on a regular basis.
- Utilize the services of respite care if there is an emergency or you are feeling exhausted.
- Ask for additional help from friends and family if you find that you are constantly tired handling all of the needs in your life.
- If you are driving and start experiencing signs that you are tired, pull off of the road and rest for a while. If you have your children or your parent with you, call someone to come get them if necessary.
Being a family caregiver can be challenging, but fortunately, there is help. As a family caregiver you do not have to feel that you are alone or that you need to take on all of the care responsibilities for your aging parent on your own. Home care is there to help you fill all of your parent’s care needs in a way that is right for them, while also supporting their independence and quality of life, and ensuring that you can focus on all of the other aspects of your life as well. This can be particularly important if you live at a distance or are in the sandwich generation, raising children as well as caring for your parent. The personalized services of a home care provider ensure that your parent has access to everything that they need to live the quality of life that they deserve both when you are with them and when you are not.