5 Ways to Stay Awake During Those Sleeping Morning Drives

5 Ways to Stay Awake During Those Sleeping Morning Drives

Whether you stayed up all night playing the newest video game, binged the latest season of your favourite show, or just simply couldn’t get a good night’s sleep, trust us, we’ve been there too. When the early morning hits and you begrudgingly make your way to the car, you should always be mindful of your condition. Fatigue can quickly sneak up on you, making driving a dangerous challenge. Drowsy driving isn’t something to laugh at, it’s a serious hazard that’s responsible for thousands of accidents every year. To keep you safe and alert at all times, we’d like to share with you five tried and tested methods that can help you remain focused at the wheel. 

1. Caffeinate, But Don’t Rely on It

Yes, it’s true, a cup of coffee or a caffeinated energy drink can be a great temporary solution for battling sleepiness. Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant that can momentarily help you improve your focus and energy levels. It’s important to note that it’s not an instant fix though, and can take about 30 minutes or more to kick in. So if you’re relying on caffeine for that extra energy kick, make sure you plan your intake wisely. Also, keep in mind that the effects of caffeine won’t last forever; they’ll wear off after several hours so it’s never a good idea to use it as a substitute for proper sleep. Besides, if you consume too much, it’ll lead to negative side effects like jitteriness, heart palpitations, and even worse fatigue, so make sure you’re always wary of how much you drink.

nathan-dumlao-6VhPY27jdps-unsplash.jpgPhoto by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

2. Tune Into Your Favourite Music

What’s a better way to keep you awake than blasting your favourite head-bopping songs? Turning up the volume to your music in the car can help you stay awake while driving in less-than-optimal conditions. And if you’re feeling up to it, singing along requires active participation which can engage your brain and distract you from dosing off. Of course, you don’t want your music to be a distraction that makes you less focused on the road, so it’s essential that you find the perfect balance - something energetic and upbeat to keep you awake, but nothing too crazy that makes you forget to pay attention to what’s in front of you. 

viktor-forgacs-B88PgQXS4qg-unsplash.jpgPhoto by Viktor Forgacs on Unsplash

3. Engage with Informative Podcasts

Thanks to the age of digital media, it’s now easier than ever before to load up your favourite podcast and listen along in the car. Continuing to rise in popularity, podcasts are great for offering listeners a wealth of information, but also providing fun entertainment on topics that interest them. These are seriously great for keeping your mind occupied on a long drive! When picking the perfect podcast for you, choose one that seems interesting and discusses topics you enjoy. You should also aim to find ones that promote active thinking, like mystery stories, trivia quizzes, or thought-provoking discussions - this will definitely help to keep your brain active and alert. But similarly to what we discussed about listening to music, make sure it’s nothing too distracting that takes your focus off the road.

darwin-vegher-IAc1x02D9K0-unsplash.jpgPhoto by Darwin Vegher on Unsplash

4. Take Regular Breaks

For those of you venturing on extremely long adventures, never forget to include regular breaks. We know that driving for long periods of time can be a monotonous task, especially when you didn’t get the proper sleep the night before. So at least once every two hours, pull over to stretch your legs, get some fresh air, or even take a quick power nap. It’s been proven that a brief nap, just a mere 15-20 minutes, is enough to make you feel significantly better and more awake. But if you’re feeling overwhelmingly tired, it’s a much safer option to just find somewhere to rest and sleep. Remember, safety should always come first.

maria-teneva-ag-iDbS3Oog-unsplash.jpgPhoto by Maria Teneva on Unsplash


5. Fresh Air and Cool Temperatures

Never underestimate the influence your environment has on you. If you find yourself growing more and more tired while driving, you should never continue in a warm environment. By setting the car’s heating too high, the warmth will certainly make you feel more drowsy than anything else. Instead, you should breathe in some fresh air by opening the window or use the car’s air conditioning to keep things nice and cool. 

jaromir-kavan-XuDPnpox8tc-unsplash.jpgPhoto by Jaromír Kavan on Unsplash

Although these five tips are incredibly useful for helping you stay awake, just remember that these are only temporary measures. If you find yourself regularly tired at the wheel, it’s clearly a sign that you’re not getting enough sleep at home. Safety should always be your top priority, so consider adjusting your schedule or seeking medical advice if this becomes a more consistent problem.


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