How do I get the best sleep? – Part 2 of “Best Sleeping Practices for Truckers”
Last week we discussed the importance of getting an energizing night (or if you prefer, day) of rest. Not only did we go over why it was so important, but we also talked about many of the difficulties you, as a Professional Truck Driver, face in getting that much-needed rest.
This week we are diving into the strategies that you can implement to getting the best night’s rest, from developing sleeping patters to easy ways to get more restful and energizing sleep.
As a recap, getting a good night’s rest is more than just sleeping, it has two vital components:
- Good sleep
Consistency is all about going to sleep at a scheduled time and waking up at a scheduled time. These scheduled times for rest do not need to be down to the minute. You can allow your bedtime and wake up call to be a more general time to go to bed and to rise.
Consistency helps to develop a better circadian rhythm. Having a well-tuned circadian rhythm allows you to fall asleep and wake up easier naturally.
For Professional Truck Drivers, that can be difficult. You need to balance shifting appointment times, Hours of Service, and a lot of other tasks.
However, you can develop routines and behaviors to make yourself more susceptible to falling asleep — these act as signals to let your brain know that it is time to rest.
These patterns can be as simple as:
- Watching a show
So long as you have a set action that you do before bed, that will signal your body that it is time for sleep. Making sure that you create and follow a schedule before going to sleep every night, can ensure a quicker movement into falling asleep.
Just make sure that your pattern before sleep is not drinking caffeine or eating spicy food.
Once you get to sleep, the other key to getting good sleep is sleeping without interruption.
We crave cool, dark, quiet spaces for the best kinds of sleep. Moreover, one of the best ways to prevent noise from interrupting your sleep is to park somewhere quiet.
Given the monumental issue of parking and that many Drivers haul reefers (including everyone in the ShipEX Fleet), it makes that task near impossible to complete.
Instead, you can control the noise with either a white noise generator or you can invest in a good pair of earplugs to reduce noise almost entirely.
And speaking of limiting things that negatively impact your sleep, we should talk about blackout curtains. Blocking out all light can make a massive difference in the quality of sleep you receive. Using a blackout curtain or an eye mask can help keep your cab dark.
Not only should you block light from entering your cab, but you should also reduce your exposure to light from within the cab. That means turning the television off before bed and putting your phone on Do Not Disturb.
Finally, getting your cab to be the exact right temperature for the best sleep can be difficult. Hot summer nights and frigid winters can put a damper on a good night’s rest.
With the development of temperature-controlled bunks and technology like Opt-Idle, you can pinpoint the perfect temperature for great sleep. It may take a little while to find the exact setting that works for you, but it will be time well spent finding the best sleep possible.
These are just some of the tips you can use to make the most out of resting during your 10-hour break. As a Professional Truck Driver hauling thousands of pounds worth of freight, you are obliged to get the best night’s rest possible. Getting the right kind of sleep not only feels great but drastically reduces your chances of causing a significant collision and harming yourself and others.
Drive safe out there!
This blog post is for informational purposes only. ShipEX makes no warranties about the completeness, reliability or accuracy of this information. Any action that you take upon the information on this website is strictly at your own risk, and ShipEX will not be liable for any losses and damages in connection therewith. Furthermore, nothing in this blog alters ShipEX Policies which are subject to change without notice.