Drowsy Driving

Women and Sleep

Each year, the National Sleep Foundation conducts a national survey of 1000 anonymous Americans across the country. Each year the survey has revealed that nearly 20% of driving Americans will admit to having fallen asleep at the wheel over the past 12 months. This is astounding as a revelation, and is coupled with the fact that over 100,000 vehicular accidents each year on American highways are believed to involve a sleepy driver.

Some state departments of motor vehicles (DMV) have made employers of truck drivers accountable for having their snoring drivers tested for sleep apnea, which is commendable. Discussion is now underway to make sleep testing of snoring transportation workers a universal requirement across the land. However, the airlines do not generally require pilots to be tested for possible sleep disturbances. The Federal Aviation Administration, while being restrictive about medications pilots may take while flying, is not discriminating about testing snoring pilots for sleep apnea.

At Optimal Sleep Health, our focus is to help those with excessive sleepiness. When this sleepiness involves the times when a person operates a moving car or plane, our evaluation and treatment can be life-saving. We surely take this responsibility very seriously. Individuals are counseled about driving safety. We will assist in decisions about driver competence and ability to return to driving in the event professional agencies have denied or suspended driving privileges.


In select cases, a Maintenance of Wakefulness Test (MWT) is performed to ascertain if a driver is safe to return to driving. The test is quite reliable to determine if the driver can sustain attentiveness even in nonstimulating circumstances. The MWT requires that a person will be available for an entire working day after a normal night of sleep. Some state DMVs will require a MWT to clear a snoring driver before return to work.