Back to School Season: Make Safety Your Priority this Fall
The time to go back to school is just around the corner and school buses will be picking up kids and young people will be scurrying across streets to get to class before the bell rings. Traffic increases and parents are often guilty of running yellow lights or speeding, as they try to drop off kids then make their way through traffic and onward to work. Likewise, young adults will be heading back to college or going off to uni for the first time. Whether you’re a parent, K-12 student or university student, back to school season means both drivers and pedestrians need to be vigilant on and off the roads. Here’s how to stay safe and prepared when getting back to school.
Driving Around Neighborhoods and School Zones
According to research by the National Safety Council, most of the children who die in bus-related incidents are ages 4-7 and it happens when they are walking. They might be hit by the bus or by a motorist illegally passing a stopped bus. If you’re driving behind a bus, allow greater following distance than when driving behind a car. And don’t try to pass it when it stops. It is illegal in all 50 states to pass a school bus that is stopped to load or unload children. Keep an eye out for children and college kids riding bikes, too. They might not always follow road rules, yet they do have the “right-of-way.”
Keep an emergency first aid kit in your car at all times. In the event you or someone else is hurt, call 911. You may be able to use items in your safety kit to tend to minor wounds or use one of the safety tools to possibly save someone’s life.
Back to School: Campus Safety for Young Adults
As college students return to campus, safety is on the minds of their parents and it should be on the mind of university students, too. Some statistics state 1 in 4 women will be the target of sexual assault during their college career. Pepper Spray is an essential tool that helps students ward off an attacker. When sprayed, it irritates the eyes and lungs, causing pain in the attacker and giving the targeted victim time to escape. Small yet powerful, it will attach to your keychain and sprays over 10 feet, making it the perfect device to keep students safe from any potential violence this school year.
It’s also a good idea to also carry a personal alarm, like defendme, which can be heard from a distance. This can deter your would-be attacker and also alert students in nearby dorms, parking lots, or pathways that something is wrong.
You can learn more about our emergency kits and personal safety products, defendme and protectme, by visiting our product page.
Would you be prepared if something went wrong while you were driving? We call it “car prepping” and luckily, just a few items can make you far more prepared should you encounter trouble on the road. So check out the 10 things you should always have in your car to guarantee you’ll be ready for anything!
Source: Driving Test VIC : Driving Test VIC is an online resource to assist people preparing for all three Victorian licensing tests. The site’s resources were designed to inform and motivate – giving you the best chance to pass on your first attempt!
Car prepping 101: The basics
Whether it’s to get you started after your battery goes flat or to help out another driver in need, jumper leads are a must have in all cars.
Spare tire (with tools)
A flat tire could leave you stranded. Making sure you have an inflated spare and tools to change a flat could save you hours of time and a lot hassle. This is a basic of car prepping.
Your phone is your most valuable lifeline in an emergency. A charger could be the difference between a minor inconvenience that’s sorted in minutes and a major hassle that lasts for hours.
Glove box or console
The simple items in a first-aid kit could help a first-responder save a life in an emergency situation. Outside of that, it’s always handy to have some medical supplies nearby. Um, car prepping 101.
Glove box or back seat
Water and non-perishable food
Depending on where you breakdown, help could be a while away. Being fed and hydrated during a long wait for help will make that stretch of time a lot more comfortable.
Cash for emergencies
Money is universal and will never be declined at the most inconvenient time. Whether it’s fuel, food or a phone call for help – emergency cash can save you in a pinch.
Glove box or console
Torch (Flashlight) and spare batteries
If you need to stop at night, you’ll want to be able to see. A torch is better than your phone’s flash and phone battery is best saved for other emergencies.
Glove box or console
Blankets and spare clothes
Blankets come in handy during a wintery night in your broken down car. After changing a tire in wet weather, the spare clothes will keep you warm and dry.
Pen, paper and disposable camera
These items will allow you to collect all the details and evidence you need for insurance after an accident. They’re essentially a backup in case your phone isn’t working.
Glove box or console
Remember, real preppers know how to read a map without GPS.
Although less and less common, physical maps and street directories never lose signal or run out of battery. Keep a good old-fashioned map of your state just in case.
Side door compartment
A car accident, no matter how trivial it is, is a scary experience for everyone. But a car accident while pregnant can be even more terrifying. Worst still, the trauma the mom-to-be experiences due to the accident can also affect the unborn child, putting his/her health and life at risk.
While there are no exact data indicating how many pregnancies are lost in the U.S. every year due to motor vehicle accidents, the number is estimated to be anywhere between 1500 and 5,000 fetal deaths from such car crashes. Most miscarriage happen during the first trimester or so, making it rather difficult to get exact numbers. It is only the fetuses that die over 20-week gestational age are recorded.
However, according to Journal of the American Medical Association, “motor vehicle crashes account for four of five deaths that occur among unborn babies of pregnant women who experience trauma.”
Car Accidents and Pregnant Women
“Automobile crashes are the largest single cause of death for pregnant women and the leading cause of traumatic fetal injury mortality in the United States.” — U. S. National Library of Medicine
What makes driving while pregnant a major challenge is the fact that seat belts, which are considered to a key safety element, are not optimally designed for keeping pregnant women safe. While they work for most people, pregnant women and their unborn babies need something more (including a three-point seat belt) to avoid the trauma during a car crash.
Besides, the abdomen-to-wheel clearance decreases with the increasing in the fetuses’ gestational age. This further increases the chances of injury and trauma even if it was a minor crash. In addition, these soon-to-be moms usually have a tendency to drive in mid-seat height conditions and they prefer not to move further away from the steering in order to operate the pedals comfortably. But this habit makes driving while pregnancy even more challenging as there is less room for abdomen-to-wheel clearance.
All these factors often lead to injuries such as uterine rupture or laceration, placental abruption, and direct fetal injury etc. for pregnant occupant(s) involved in motor-vehicle crashes. The following are the most dangerous types of car crashes for a soon-to-be-mom and her unborn child:
- Side-impact, or T-bone, collisions
- Rollover accidents
- Head-on accidents
- Rear-end collisions
So if you are pregnant and somehow got yourself involved in a car accident, safety should be your first priority. Get medical attention as soon as possible, you can worry about whose fault it was and the claims later.
Things You Need to Do Soon After an Accident
As said, first priority for pregnant occupant(s) involved in car crashes is to immediately seek medical help to ensure the safety of both the mother and the unborn baby. Do this even if it is a minor fender-bender incident. The mental anguish like stress and emotional duress that result from the trauma can lead to birth complications or worse, the death of the fetus.
Call 911 and/or other emergency immediately. Some of the most common conditions pregnant women are like to feel after the accident include:
- Experience vaginal bleeding
- Feel pain in belly or pelvis
- Lose consciousness
- Experience leaking fluid from the vagina and/or feel the umbilical cord is bulging into the vagina
In case, the latter actually happens, get down to your knees immediately, keeping your buttocks higher than your head. This helps in decreasing the pressure on the umbilical cord and is likely to keep the baby safe until you receive medical attention.
Even if you are released by the medical professional, it is recommended to continue to monitor yourself for hours, days, weeks, and months for symptoms indicating a problem. The following are some of the conditions you need to be careful about:
- Swelling in your fingers or face
- Vaginal bleeding or spotting
- Pain in your shoulder areas or abdomen
- Increased vaginal discharge or a leakage of fluid
- Persistent vomiting that has nothing to do with morning sickness
- Severe, constant headaches
- A noticeable change in the baby’s movement
- Chills or a fever
- Faintness or dizziness
- Urgent and painful urination
If you experience any of these conditions even months after the car accident, immediately get medical attention to seek further treatment. It is very important to remember that even a minor accident can lead to high-risk pregnancy, premature birth, or worse, miscarriage. You may even require to visit a perinatologist or maternal-fetal specialist apart from your regular doctor. These are doctors specialized in high-risk pregnancies.
When to Hire an Attorney if You’ve Been in a Car Accident While Pregnant
Pregnant drivers are likely to have more car crashes. ~ Canadian Medical Association Journal.
Any pregnant woman involved and injured in a car crash should ideally seek legal advice from a personal injury attorney, especially if she experiences any of the conditions mentioned above. High-risk pregnancies need additional medical care and will therefore incur additional cost. In fact, their costs usually outweigh the cost of a normal pregnancy by a large extend.
A personal injury attorney will help you file your claim and also help you recoup these costs. And unfortunately, if you have had a miscarriage, a lawyer can not only help you claim compensation for the loss but also help you deal with the agonizing and heart-breaking experience with professional legal counsel.
In short, you need a personal injury attorney protect you and your unborn baby’s rights by pursuing legal action against the at-fault party. Depending upon your situation, an attorney can assist you recover financial damages to compensate for medical expenses, loss of income, and physical and emotional pain and suffering.
How to Prevent a Car Accident While Pregnant
Never trade safety for comfort when driving while pregnant. A three-point seatbelt, for example, can be often uncomfortable but it will surely keep you and your baby safe from the impact in case of a car crash.
Also, follow other safe driving tips when you are driving or riding a car while pregnant. And if you have been involved in a car crash, never take things for granted. Even if there is no visible injury, visit the emergency room soon after the accident and get yourself examined to ensure that your baby isn’t physically hurt. Remember that it is always better to be safe than sorry.
Author: Rachel Oliver is a freelance writer from Florida, who loves to write about topics like personal injury law, automobile accidents law, and medical negligence law. Currently, she is writing on behalf of a civil trial attorney, Christopher Jayson, Founder at JFSW Law. He has tremendous trial experience in cases involving automobile, truck and motorcycle accidents, inadequate security and premise liability, products liability, medical malpractice, and commercial litigation.
School is out and summer is the time when families hit the road together for that memorable family vacation. As you plan your road trip and route your destinations, make sure your car has the appropriate first-aid and emergency kit contents and do a maintenance double check to ensure your car is in tip-top shape for the open road.
Ever since I was little, I have always looked forward to vacationing with family and friends. Growing up, we took a lot of road trips because we lived in a very central location to many awesome places. Sure, flights will get you to your destination in a more convenient and sometimes cheaper way, but road trips are a perfect family bonding experience. Check out three road trips across America that you should take with your kids before they are too old to enjoy playing “I Spy” in the car.
Washington D.C. is the perfect road trip for kids because it combines learning with fun. There is an abundance of museums, monuments, attractions and sporting events available in D.C. for your whole family to enjoy. There are so many kid-friendly attractions that offer hands-on experiences.
What to See and Do: Smithsonian Museums, American Art Museum, National Air and Space Museum, National Museum of American History, National Museum of Natural History, National Museum of the American Indian, Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, Jefferson Memorial, World War II Memorial, Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial, The Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial, The Korean War Veterans Memorial, Pentagon Memorial, The National Zoo, The National Archives, The International Spy Museum
Road Trip to the Coasts
I have very fond memories of enjoying summers at the beach. Whether you decide to road trip it to Florida, the Carolinas, or California, you are bound to have some fun in the sun. The great thing about going to the beach is that they are in abundance across the U.S. so you can choose the one closest to you. Just grab your swimsuit, sunscreen and sunglasses and be a beach bum with your family!
What to See and Do: the ocean, mini-golf, outlet shopping, ice cream shops, the pool, seafood restaurants, ocean activities: parasailing, kayaking, banana boat rides, scuba diving, dolphin watching
Disney World or Disneyland
Who doesn’t love Mickey and Minnie? While you can enjoy Disney at any age, there’s nothing like seeing your child’s face light up when they see their favorite Disney character in person. Visiting Disney World and Disneyland can be quite an expensive trip, so opting for a road trip instead of flying can save you a lot of money and help you cut some expenses. The Disney experience is a trip that your family will never forget!
What to See and Do: Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios, character experiences, water parks, restaurants, shows, parades.
Be Sure to Prepare
So, in order to make a road trip successful, proper planning ahead and smart packing is important. Because you will be spending a lot of time in your car with your family, you should bring safety items like an emergency kit as well as snacks, blankets, and items to keep your kids entertained. You should make sure that your kit includes first aid items as well as items like a flashlight, whistle, and jumper cables as well as a spare tire in case your car breaks down.
Rest and Relaxation v. Drowsy Driving
Be sure that you get proper rest before getting on the road, because long periods of driving can cause you to be drowsy. Also, try to make sure there is as least one person awake with the driver to keep their mind occupied to stay safe and prevent accidents. A good option to have in your car is an alertme “stay awake” device that can help alert you if you dose off. The alertme is also included in some of the kits.
Now that you’re fully prepared and inspired to take the road trip your kids will be talking about for years, take a photo of your family with your resqme tool, use #resqme, and show us what’s on your keychain!
Happy road tripping!
Author: Samantha Tung handles online media relations for Caliber Collision. She regularly produces content for a variety of lifestyle and automotive blogs, and in her spare time, she enjoys taking road trips and traveling.
Your garage can be a killer! That’s an attention-grabbing claim, isn’t it? However, it’s not an exaggeration from a safety freak. It’s the truth, as statistics sadly show. People die in garage accidents all too often. Severe injuries are even more common. These tragedies are preventable. Here are six common causes of garage accidents and how to keep them from becoming a problem.
1. The Garage Door
The door is the most common culprit in garage accidents. According to statistics from the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, more than 30,000 injuries are caused by garage doors each year, and some of the injuries result in death. What can you do to prevent becoming part of these garage accident statistics?
- Make sure your garage door system has an automatic reverse that causes the door to open if it strikes anything while closing
- Never try DIY repair on garage door torsion springs because they can snap or uncoil rapidly with tremendous force
- If opening the door manually, use the door handle rather than pulling down on a panel edge which can lead to crushed fingertips
- Choose a door with finger-trap protection in its design
- Install a door with a safety device that stops the door from falling if a torsion spring breaks
2. Carbon Monoxide
CO is doesn’t have an odor, so it can kill you before you realize you’re being poisoned by it. Here’s how to prevent problems:
- Never warm up the car in the garage, even with the garage door open
- Never shut the garage door before you turn off the vehicle because it’s possible to fall asleep, for example, while listening to that last great song or two when arriving home late at night
- Install a carbon monoxide monitor in the house on a wall adjoining the garage and in living space above the garage
- Never run a generator or other gas-powered equipment in the garage
Gas spills in the garage or escaping fumes from a gas storage container can cause explosion or fire. They can be prevented with these tips:
- Store gasoline outside or in a shed and only in approved containers
- If you see that gas has dripped from your vehicle, have the leak repaired immediately
- Fill gas-powered equipment outside rather than in the garage
- Never install a gas-fired furnace or water heater in the garage because gas fumes can reach the ignition flame and explode
- Follow these tips for any flammable liquid such as kerosene and paint thinner
4. Your Vehicles
Young kids like to play in cars. However, it may be possible for them to climb into the car and lock the door without being able to unlock it. Disaster can result, especially if the garage is hot or the keys are left in the vehicle and the child starts it. Here’s how to prevent problems:
- Keep your vehicles locked, and you won’t need the other tips
- Don’t leave your keys in the car
- Keep a tool handy like the Resqme Quick Car Escape Tool that will allow you to break a vehicle’s window to save a trapped child
Did you know that people have been injured and killed by falling clutter in their own homes? It happens more often than you might imagine. Clutter can cause trips and falls too. Here are a few ideas to prevent this danger from striking in the garage:
- Have a garage sale, and make a few bucks while improving garage safety
- Move excess gear, tools, toys and equipment to a shed or storage facility (rather than to the basement, where the same clutter problems can develop)
- Don’t allow kids to play in the garage unattended
- Don’t stack boxes and bins high enough to become a toppling problem
- Install bright lights, so you can see where you’re going and what’s on the ground in front of you
- Keep kids’ toys elsewhere or on or near the ground, so children won’t be hurt trying to pull them down from a shelf or hook
6. Chemicals your Pet Might Like
Let’s not forget our little friends in this discussion! Engine coolant, road salt and ice-melting granules are poisonous, but some pets like the way they taste. Keep your furry friends safe with these tips:
- Keep your pets out of the garage
- Use towels, sawdust or kitty litter to absorb and remove spills
- Have your car serviced if it is leaking coolant
- Wash your car frequently in winter
- Remove salt from the garage floor with a hose or mop and water
An Ounce of Prevention can Keep you Safe from Garage Accidents
You know the old saying, right, so take preventative measures today by using this guide as a checklist. An organized garage is a safe garage and you’ll be making your garage a safer place for adults, kids and pets too.
Author: Matt Milstead is a blogger and writer from Australia interested in and covering topics related to safety. As the father of a toddler, Matt enjoys nothing more than getting away from work and spending time traveling with his family. He can be reached on Twitter via @
Fitting Your Child Correctly in the Car Seat
Although the laws concerning child car seats will vary between Western countries, they are all set out with the common purpose of maximizing the safety of young children, particularly in the event of a crash. The type of car seat that is most ideal for your child will depend on his/her age and physical development. A baby in the first year of his/her life should always travel in a rear-facing car seat, as he/she will be pulled into the seat with minimal impact on his/her neck or spinal cord in a crash. Thereafter, the child can be placed in a forward-facing seat and latterly a booster seat as he/she grows older and bigger, until such time that a normal seatbelt can fit snugly across their shoulder and chest. A seatbelt should never cross a child’s neck or face, nor rest on his/her stomach, as these could be lacerated in a crash.
This infographic from Woodstock Motors dispenses hugely important safety advice relating to the selection of a child car seat, as well as offering tips on what to look out for when purchasing one. It sets out to inform parents and guardians that not all car seats are created equal, and by selecting the one that is the best fit for your child, it may just prove the difference between life and death if you and your children are unfortunate enough to be involved in a car crash.
Author and source: Mark Dressekie with http://www.woodstockmotors.co.uk/repairs.html
National Child Vehicular Heatstroke Prevention and Awareness Day – How to Rescue a Child Left in a Hot Car
On average once every nine days a young child dies due to heatstroke in a vehicle. As part of National Child Vehicular Heatstroke Prevention and Awareness Day, we remember these children and try to educate other families on the dangers of leaving a child in a car alone.
Stress, new parenthood and schedule changes can equal forgetfulness
Unfortunately, due to stress, changes in a schedule or distractions, we hear stories where a parent or caregiver has unknowingly left a child alone in a vehicle. Sadly, we also hear of many stories where the parent intentionally left the child in the car for a few minutes while running errands. Sometimes a parent driving on “autopilot” can actually lock and leave their car, forgetting the sleeping baby or toddler in the back seat. If it seems unbelievable, it is actually a that cycle continues year after year as the auto industry refuses to add simple, existing driver-reminder technology to their vehicles, and refusing to test new lifesaving options.
“The worst thing any parent or caregiver can do is think that this could never happen to them or that they are not capable of unknowingly leaving their child behind,” says Janette Fennell, founder and president of KidsAndCars.org, the leading national nonprofit child safety organization working solely to prevent injuries and deaths of children in and around motor vehicles. “This can and does happen to the most loving, responsible and attentive parents; no one is immune,” Fennell said.
Vehicular heatstroke – there is no safe temperature to leave a child inside a car alone
Summer approaches and already nine children have died from vehicle related heatstroke. That’s a 225% increase compared to last year at the same time. Since 1990, more than 750 children have died in such preventable tragedies. An average of 37 children die every year from vehicular heatstroke. Numerous states have enacted “Good Samaritan” laws protecting people who break a window to save a child locked inside, on the verge of heatstroke.
“We encourage individuals in all communities to take action if you see a child alone in a vehicle,” stressed Amber Andreasen, director of KidsAndCars.org. “Try to find the driver of the vehicle, call 911 and if the child seems to be in imminent danger, break the window furthest away from the child to rescue them.”
Carry your resqme keychain and be a ‘Good Samaritan’
You can use the resqme tool to break the window farthest away from the child. The spring-loaded device is tapped on the corner of a car window and the glass is shattered.
Look before you lock
One tip experts give is to leave a purse or cell phone in the backseat, forcing you to check the backseat before exiting and locking the car. Through KidsandCars’ “Look Before You Lock” educational campaign, they’ve distributed at least 750,000 safety information cards to birthing hospitals and new parents. This education campaign will continue, but at the same time technology is needed to prevent these tragedies.
For additional information, statistics and charts specific to child vehicular heat stroke visit http://www.kidsandcars.org/heatstroke-day.html and to purchase a resqme and donate to KidsAndCars, click the picture below:
Visit http://noheatstroke.org to find out more facts and stats about vehicular heatstroke and share with parents and community members.
Lifesaving Testimonial: 16-yr-old driver flips car upside down into water and escapes using her resqme tool to break the window and crawl out!
Her father sent this testimonial to us: “I just wanted to thank you for making this product. Your glass breaker saved my 16 year old daughter today. She rolled her car into a brook and the car went down and if it wasn’t for this product she may have not been with us anymore. She quickly pulled it off her keychain and broke the side window and climbed out. Thank you”
Every parent gets a bit nervous when their teenager starts to drive. Even if you know your child is a careful driver, you will always have that thought at the back of your mind that they might become distracted while driving with friends and end up in a fender-bender.
One of the biggest risks of distraction is often posed by their passengers, especially when these consist of their teenage friends. Teens can easily get distracted when their friends are in the back, and this can be dangerous for all of them.
Here’s a guide to what your teenage child and their friends should know to reduce distractions caused by passengers. Share and discuss these points with your teen driver.
Explain to them that the dangers are real:
According to the New York State Department of Health website, for teens aged 15 to 19 years, motor vehicle crashes are the main cause of hospitalizations and unintentional deaths in the state (73 deaths a year).
Importantly, it also states that teen passengers have a greater chance of being seriously injured when another teen is driving the vehicle.
Seat belts are a must:
Remind your teen child and their friends to always buckle-up when behind the wheel. Seat belts save lives. Without them, a relatively minor accident could be severe. The New York State Department of Health claims that they cut the risk of serious injuries by anything from 50 to 83 percent. The CDC also has some interesting stats on seat belts and injuries.
Speed is deadly:
One of the biggest causes of crashes in teen drivers is speeding. Teens are particularly at risk because they are not only less experienced, but they may want to show off to their friends. Teach your child about the risks of speeding and make sure they know how dangerous it can be. Remind them not to feel pressured to drive fast just to show off to their friends.
One way to get through to them could be to remind them that they are liable if they cause a crash that results in injury to another driver or pedestrian. The injured driver may want to file a lawsuit against the negligent driver, and this is something your child will clearly want to avoid. You can also discuss the emotions of how your teen might feel if they were to hit a pedestrian or child while speeding – once they register the severity of the emotional consequences for their self and the family of injured, they will likely be more conscious of their decisions behind the wheel.
Take care when driving at night:
Driving at night can also be more dangerous, so you may want to restrict your child’s driving to daylight hours until you both are confident in their driving abilities. If you are buying them their first car, you can make this a condition that they have to follow.
Educate your teen’s friends on passenger etiquette:
Teen passengers causing distractions can present serious risks to everyone in the vehicle. Although it may not be easy to educate your child’s friends on the risks, try to remind them when they head out and your child is driving. If you know their parents, you could also suggest that they all teach their children about the dangers.
In fact, it may be best if your child does not carry teenage passengers who fail to follow proper passenger etiquette. Perhaps you can make that a condition of paying for their driving lessons or car, etc.
Help Your Teen to Drive Safer
Every parent worries about their teenage children driving on the roads. As long as you teach them the rules of the road and do everything you can to educate them—and their friends—on the dangers, they will be at less risk.
By Anna Burke: Anna Burke has worked in various roles within the auto industry for many years. Now semi-retired she uses her knowledge combined with current events to write articles. She has discovered a new passion she didn’t know existed until very recently but is thoroughly enjoying connecting with others through her writing.
Driving to and from work every day can put physical and mental strain on the body. Stop-and-go traffic and unpredictable drivers can make your daily commute nerve-wracking. Even commuting alone can take a toll on mental and physical health, says Psychology Today. Commuters who drive more than 10 miles each way experience higher cholesterol and blood sugar levels, Time reports, probably from the time spent sitting in one place. Blood pressure can spike as well. And to top it off, commuting for more than 30 minutes raises anxiety levels.
Here are five ways to lessen the anxiety and irritability your commute might be causing.
1. Listen to something interesting
Audiobooks and podcasts capture your attention better than hearing the same songs, rants and jokes over and over again on the radio. Listen to something enriching, not noise that irritates or burdens you.
2. Make Sure You’re Physically Comfortable
Long commutes can also aggravate the back, legs, neck and eyes. Here are a few simple modifications that can relieve discomfort:
- Sit on a cushion designed to provide lumbar and lower-back support.
- A cushioned seat belt strap ends irritating strap rub.
- Always wear sunglasses. Polarized lenses used during the commute reduces eye strain from the sun’s glare off snow and other reflective surfaces you may pass. They also help if your commute puts you in the path of sunrises and sunsets.
- Bring a change of clothing and shoes. If you have to dress up for your job, changing into something comfortable for a long drive can make a huge difference.
3. Change Your Route Home Once in a While
Try taking different routes home from work. Variety can be a useful stimulant and even if another route takes a few more minutes, it can take the edge off the usual routine. (If you’ve found a reliable, timely way to get to work, you may want to stick to that route.)
4. If Time Permits, Run Errands
If it’s possible, break up the commute by stopping to pick up a prescription or snack, or do your grocery shopping on the way home. Your body will surely appreciate the break from the driver’s seat and your mind will have something different to focus on than the same drive each and every day.
5. Consider Carpooling or Public Transportation
Very few people actually carpool. The U.S. Census Bureau says more than three-quarters of all people who drive to work are alone in their cars. Being alone for long periods of time every day can be an isolating experience, says Psychology Today.
If a regular carpool isn’t an option, ask around the office to see if there’s someone who lives along your route. Perhaps you can pick up or drop off this person once or twice a week. Having company in the car can be a huge benefit. Studies in Sweden and England found that commuters who used public transportation suffered less from stress and social isolation than those who drove alone.
If public transit is out of the question (and many American cities and suburbs have very poor transit), an occasional or regular passenger could be quite beneficial. Is there a better way to start the day than a cheery “hello!” from a new work buddy?