What’s the Best Way to Stay Awake When You’re Driving?
Find the answer to questions that pique your curiosity in our “Short Answer” series. Sleep medicine specialist Nancy Foldvary-Schaefer, DO, MS, answer this one.
A: Some of the most common tactics people rely on to stay awake behind the wheel include talking on the phone, blasting the radio, eating candy, rolling down the windows, and even slapping or pinching yourself.
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But if you’re drowsy, none of these techniques will make you more alert. More than a century of sleep deprivation research shows that humans can’t recognize severe sleepiness adequately under sleep-deprived conditions.
—Sleep medicine specialist Nancy Foldvary-Schaefer, DO, MS