Can prescription drugs make it unsafe to drive?

When you started having trouble sleeping, you went to see your doctor. They decided that you'd benefit from a short course of sleeping pills, just so that you could get back into the habit of sleeping through the night. They hoped that your insomnia would cure itself after a short time.

You were happy with this and decided to take the pill that evening. You slept well through the night, but you had to get up early. Just seven hours later, you were up and getting ready for work, but you felt pretty drowsy.

Sleeping pills are dangerous for drivers, so consider other options before you get behind the wheel. With most sleeping pills, you need to rest at least eight hours. Even then, some people will be drowsy the next day. You don't want to risk falling asleep behind the wheel. If you don't feel awake, always call someone else to get the ride to work or wherever you plan to go.

Sleeping pills aren't the only dangerous medications

Other medications, both prescription and non-prescription, can make it unsafe to drive. Some antihistamines, pain medications and anxiety or anti-depressive medications can lead to drowsiness or falling asleep behind the wheel.

Any time you're going to be taking a new medication or adding a medication on top of those that you're already taking, try to do so when you have time to see how they'll affect you. Don't think about driving. You should have someone else take you where you need to go until you know how your medications will affect your senses.

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