Being on the road all the time can be very stressful for truck drivers. There are tight timelines, long hours of being stuck in traffic and inclement weather that can make driving dangerous – even for the most experienced drivers. Even if most people don’t think about it, being a truck driver can be a very stressful job, but there are ways you can reduce that stress while on the road.
Signs of stress
To reduce stress while on the road, you’ll first need to know how to recognize that you are experiencing it. There are many signs of stress that people don’t necessarily recognize as stress but are thought of as just part of regular life.
Chronic stress can lead to a number of long-term health conditions like mental health problems, obesity, increased blood pressure, or even heart disease.
Signs of stress to look out for include low energy levels (lower than normal for you), upset stomach, teeth grinding, difficulty relaxing or falling asleep at night, being easily frustrated or irritated or frequent headaches. There could also be other signs of being stressed that are unique to your body, so if you have concerns, you may want to make an appointment with your doctor to have a conversation about your health.
When you’re on the road a lot, it can be really difficult to eat healthily, but there are small changes you can make to your diet that can make a big impact. For example, if you are ordering a hamburger, you may want to try it without a bun or try bringing your own nutritious snacks. In addition to this, staying hydrated is really important, so try to drink as much water as you can by filling up a water bottle (or several) at each truck stop.
Being a truck driver, by its very definition, means that you spend a lot of your time sitting, so it can be difficult to get out and move around. As much as you possibly can, get out and move around. This means walking around when you stop at a rest stop and exercising as much as possible. Further, exercising helps clear your mind if you find yourself unable to relax or fall asleep at night.
A good night’s sleep is key to your overall health and reducing stress in your life. Ideally, adults should get between 7 and 9 hours of sleep every night. To get a night of good sleep, turn off all electronics and make sure you’re sleeping in a cool, dark room.
Music or podcasts
Listening to your favourite music or a podcast that interests you can make a big difference in your driving experience and reduce stress. Turning the time into something that interests you or is mentally stimulating can help your mind focus and relieve tension, reducing stress while driving. Some drivers listen to soothing music; however, for some people, that can make them drowsy and a little too relaxed – which is not something that truck drivers want to experience on the road. The key is to develop a listening habit that works for you.
About Rhino Truck and Lube Centres
At Rhino, we offer a number of services for truckers and their vehicles, like lube services and truck washes. But we also offer a place for truckers to relax, purchase healthy food and relieve stress. Visit us next time you are close to one of our centres.