If you’re a workaholic or work late into the night, getting home after work can be hard when you’re sleepy. Moreover, sometimes at the end of a long day, all that you need is a seat to fall asleep. Long drive to morning drives, driving sleepy is not safe driving.
Defense driving advocates that drivers must never drive continuously and always take a coffee break within 1-2 hours of driving. Another alternative is to sleep and continue on the road whenever fatigue or sleepiness hits the head. Car camping is yet another valid reason for car sleeping to be taken seriously.
So, are you a Car Sleeper too?
Sleeping In Car
Today, there are millions or RVers and caravanners all around us. To travel the road less travelled, often you have to sacrifice your spring mattress and cozy quilts. Sleep is just one of the penances for the fun.
If you avoid sleeping on an upright driver’s seat, you jolt awake to the blaring honk on your ears!
Rookie research has termed passing out in a car as ‘Carcolepsy’, but the truth behind sleeping in a moving vehicle has to do with your infancy. It is believed that a moving vehicle resembles the feeling of the mother cradling the baby in a crib.
Why do you sleep in a moving vehicle?
For busy people, crashing might be routine and the same is why your sleep cycle as well as the circadian rhythm might be harmed too. Certain researchers advocate that it is the monotonous nature of car rides, which makes it hypnotic and drowsy. Cars are known to create a consistent frequency of white noise and hence a stimulant to sleep. Read more on white noise here. White noise in cars shed the limelight on how you can make your habit of being a Car Sleeper, safe and healthy.
Renowned as highway hypnosis, the fatigue of long drive is a known causative of sleeping in a moving vehicle. Provided you’re on a long route and there’s no hotel, it is best to park your car safe and sleep.
How to Make your Car Sleep-Ready
Having agreed that sleeping in the car is occasional for a majority of us, the next step is to check if the sleeping practice is right.
Do you sleep off on your seat without adjusting the foot or back elevation? Do you wake with your face flat on the horn? Or do you park your car safely and doze off in permitted areas or under watch? Have you been woken up in the morning by local people, telling to move?
One of the biggest problems of driving with sleep on your head is the high risk of accidents during driving. However, you don’t need to be the Hunchback of Notre Dame in order to have a long day’s rest.
· Do you have the sleeping paraphernalia
If you’re a rookie at being a Car Sleeper, you must first get yourself sleeping gear that fits with your sedan or SUV. First, is a comfortable sleeping bag as well as bedcover that can simultaneously help you during winter, summer or rain. You must pack appropriate pillows that fit within the seat space or angle of your sleeping posture in the car. Having a tiny humidifier can keep the air clean and cool too.
Even cloths in heaps can act as bedding during unreasonable times that you’re stuck in your car I winter. Carry a flashlight, hand wipes or sanitizer in addition to earplugs.
· Park safe
Parking safe is a necessity for Car Sleepers. You must never park your car randomly along the sides and doze off. Make sure to watch out for the locality. If you suspect disturbance, make sure to park somewhere from where you can drive-off steadfast in time of an emergency.
Try parking in the parking lots of restaurants or buildings after seeking permission. If you park your car next to where your morning routine can continue like a bathroom, it is the best!
· Does your car have ventilation in sleep mode?
One Dangerous news that most of us come across have come across recently is that of babies who die being locked inside cars. If you’re locked inside a car without any air circulation, fatality rate turns critical too. You must always make sure to leave a slight crack in the window for ventilation when sleeping inside your car.
Make sure to avoid leaving too much space, in order to avoid invaders who might attack your car or you during sleep.
· A clean bedding
Cleanliness might not occur to you as a good enough reason to prepare your car for sleeping purposes. But the truth is that a clean bedding is a secret behind a good night’s sleep inside your car. If you sleep on the seat, the discomfort of allergens on the seat and dust in the air can be an inevitable reason to add to your insomnia.
When sleeping, make sure it is nothing but your essential items like torch and phone within your reach. In an emergency, often a cluttered car can add to disorientation and bumping around.
· Face your Car away from entrance
It is common to encounter random people waking you up, fussing to move off your parking space. Apart from real owners of the parking space, even passer-bys often stop and ogle or ponder about the car that has been parked for hours at a location. If you have no permits, be wary of the intruders. It is best to avoid confrontation and drive off ASAP!
Parking your car away from the entrance of the alley or backwards can avoid being spied upon.
· Camouflage the Car
When car camping, the best way to camouflage your car is to leave a crack open after covering the car. If you’re in the countryside, the best way is to get a tarpaulin and mask your car underneath it.
· Zip your sleeping bag
Sleeping inside your car is almost opposite to sleep in your cozy bed at home. One of the biggest disadvantages is when the quilt or sleeping bag falls off you. One way to keep your sleeping bag steady as well as yourself is by using safety pins to pin the bag to the seat!
Where to Sleep Properly in a Car
From realizing new horizons to taking extreme decisions, car camping can open your life to many daring and adventurous routes. In addition to knowing how to sleep in your car you must also know ‘where’ to sleep on. Sleeping in a car requires a lot of care. If you’re not a regular Car Sleeper, the lack of space can add to your hunched and cramped muscles in the morning.
Most Car Sleepers vouch that the Ibuprofin or aspirin before crashing helps them loosen their cramps in the morning. Nevertheless, one has many options to sleep in appropriate spaces within the car to indulge in a healthy sleeping habit.
· Sleeping in the driver’s seat
If you prefer to sleep on the driver’s seat, it is important to adjust your seat unlike that of the driving position. Hunching down onto the steering wheel is a wrong way to sleep in the car. The best way to sleep on the driver’s seat is by moving back your seat, pulling the back flap down, adjusting the neck pillow and back pillow.
This will also help you get upright and move whenever you want. In addition, for a passer-by the car also looks empty!
· Sleeping on the Back Seat
If there is no one in your car and you’re solo riding the road less travelled, the best way to sleep is stretched out on the back seat. If you’re 7 ft or so, fetal position will be the only option available for you. Moreover, you can adjust the pillows and bedding in such a way that you can even plop your feet out (considering it is a safe space that you parked in) and sleep!
To avoid the mosquito bites because of the open window, make sure to wear a mosquito repellent lotion before dozing off.
· Adjust the Seats
Just like adjustable beds, car seats also have superior mechanisms to adjust your elevations. There are camper cars that provide your foot elevation, opposite to moving forth or back your seat, when the user wants to sleep. If you’re at the backseat, move the front seat away and vice versa. Make sure to adjust the seats so as to wake up without discomfort.
Adjusting the back angle with the seat when you sleep will not only rectify your backache and such problems, but also heal your sleep cycle. Read more on a mattress to help back aches.
· Have two positions to sleep on
Sleeping inside the car is not a pleasant affair for newbies. If you’re one, then the best way to acquaint yourself is by having two different positions to sleep on. If you’re a side sleeper, consider getting pillows to help you become a back or stomach sleeper. Twisting and turning is the only way to maximize and use the car space for sleeping!
Myths and facts about Sleeping in Cars
There are many myths and facts that add to sleeping inside cars. One such myth is how the air conditioning can kill you. But, this can happen only if your car has a problem of gas leak or so. The first sign of leakage is the lower rate of oxygen, which has proved to be deadly due to its suffocation, in many cases. The vital point to remember is that ventilation is necessary when you’re a Car Sleeper. You must always leave a sufficient crack on your window and lock the car prior to falling asleep.
Best cars to sleep in
Some cars are made with a focus on keeping the owner as comfy as possible. The same is why many SUVs today are attached with pop-up campers customized to car camp. From BMW X5 to Jeep Renegade, there are variety of models that boast of conventional canvas and plentiful ground clearance for off-road camping.
Honda Element with E Camper
A classic edition where Honda collaborated with the pop camper kings- Ursa Minor Vehicles to build a ‘home away from home’. The SUV has a sleeper cabin that can be raised for bedding without being crouched. The pop up is safe and open from the centre of the SUV, unlike canvas pop ups that keep the toad (towed vehicle) open.
Known for its confusing and avant-garde architecture, Audi Q3 also boasts a sleep perfect tent on its back. Opening at the boot lid, the tent is inflatable and provides the best way to sleep inside the extended car space.
Tesla Model S
A gorgeous sedan claiming to have plentiful interior space to bed two+ people in a stretched out position, the Tesla Model S also boasts seating for 7 people. The car is known to be a camper car for its options to fit fridge, generator and even satellites for overnight camping.
Claiming to have five of the rear seats to flat position and bed five persons, Nissan X-Trail is a cleverly designed car. Nissan X-Trail is ideal for adventurers as well as busy folks who must fit sleeping in the commute time.
Chevrolet Conversion Van
The 1980s star conversion is a spacious camper van today. Known for its extravagant space to seat more than 8 people, the conversion can also sleep 4 to 5 people. The van is fitted with camping necessities such as cool box and Nintendo via TV.
The best advice for a Car Sleeper, from a veteran is to keep moving when you wake up. It is not good to eat and sleep at one place. If you’re frequently on the move, never settle at your sleeping parking space to spend time eating. The hack is to avoid attention and suspicion.