Sleep apnea is a concerning condition that affects your breathing when you sleep. It interrupts your sleep so that you do not get adequate rest each night. According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, this condition may increase your chances of getting into a car accident. Since nobody in Texas wants to deal with an accident, this is worth learning more about if you have sleep apnea.
The research into sleep apnea and driving habits shows the condition makes you 2.5 times more likely to have an accident than someone without it. However, if you get treatment for the condition by using a CPAP, it can reduce that risk by 70%. Still, you have a higher risk than the average driver of getting into a crash.
When you think about sleep apnea and its symptoms, it is fairly easy to see why it might put you at risk behind the wheel. You likely have issues with daytime sleepiness. You may not get more than five hours of uninterrupted sleep at night. You may even use sleeping pills to help you sleep. These factors all add up to drowsiness during the day.
Drowsy driving can be as bad as drunk driving. It reduces your ability to react. It affects your reasoning skills. It slows your body. Not to mention that it also increases the chances of you nodding off while driving. Driving when tired is incredibly dangerous, but it may be even more so if you do it every day because it becomes the normal thing. You may not even realize you are a danger to yourself and others.
If you suspect you have sleep apnea or are currently under treatment for the condition, then you need to be aware that it could affect your driving abilities. You may want to avoid driving unless you feel fully rested or talk to your health care professional about treatment options to help you get a good night’s rest.