Getting enough quality sleep is just as important as eating a healthy diet and getting plenty of exercise. Lack of proper sleep can result in slower reaction times, a foggy brain, and moodiness. Since your body isn’t able to repair itself properly without sleep, you could have increased risk for medical problems and more likelihood of eating problems.
Truck driving itself can be a stressful and potentially dangerous job, so you need to take care of yourself as much as possible normally. Part of that includes getting enough rest so that you can perform your job for you and those that depend on you. Here are 5 sleeping tips for truck drivers.
Dangers of Not Getting Enough Sleep
If you’re a professional truck driver, you already know how demanding the job is on you both physically and mentally. A lack of quality sleep can adversely affect your ability to properly and safely do your job. Not only will you be more likely to be caught drowsy driving, which increases your likelihood of getting into a crash, but you’ll avoid legal ramifications.
If you are in an accident, hire a quality lawyer like those at the Law Firm of Jeremy Rosenthal. It takes an attorney skilled in trucking laws and accidents to lessen penalties toward truck drivers, or prove that it was another driver’s fault.
A Good Sleep Environment
Finding a relaxing and safe sleep environment can help you feel more alert and ready to do your job. Find a safe place with little to no outside noise and block outside lights with a curtain or window shades. Alternatively, if you’re unable to do so, grab yourself noise reducing earplugs and get a light blocking eye mask.
Everyone is different, so find a temperature setting that is most comfortable for you. Some people prefer to sleep with a fan, which circulates air and helps keep you cool. Get yourself a comfortable pillow, mattress, and bedding. These not only improve your sleep but will also be better for your back and neck.
Try to Be Consistent
Most people are able to function better on a consistent sleep schedule. Your job may not afford you that luxury but do your best to listen to your body. When you’re feeling tired or groggy, stop and take a break. Try to get between 7-9 hours of sleep within every 24-hour period. Make time each day to get at least 30 minutes of physical exercise, which will help you sleep better as well.
Things to Avoid
Avoiding some things before you are ready to sleep is beneficial. Stay away from caffeinated drinks for about 5 hours before bedtime (which can also cause you to go to the bathroom throughout the night), avoid stimulants such as nicotine, don’t eat spicy meals right before bed, and stay off electronic devices. The lighting from smartphones has been shown to cause sleep disturbances.
If there are people who regularly keep in touch with you, let them know when you’re planning to rest. Prepare for bed by doing the normal things you would do if you were at home, like brushing your teeth or washing your face. Just because you’re away from home doesn’t mean you can’t still get the rest you need and deserve.