Truck drivers are stereotypically known for using drugs more frequently than the average civilian, but recently in a BMJ study revealed this to be true. Why is that? From long hours and stretches with no one to talk to, there are plenty of reasons truck drivers may turn to drugs to cope, stay awake, and to seek fulfillment when their job is constant and perpetual.
To Stay Awake
The extremely long hours behind a wheel demand that truckers drive into the night and after they have become too tired to drive. When caffeine and energy shots aren’t enough, truckers may turn to methamphetamines or cocaine to stay awake. To avoid falling asleep on the road, these uppers can help truck drivers stay alert and focused. The long hours behind the wheel must be met with frequent breaks and naps when the driver is tried.
To Cope with Loneliness
Truck drivers are often on the road for days and weeks at a time, with nothing to do but drive all day, every day. To combat loneliness, truck drivers may drink on the road or use illicit drugs. Not only can this be a form of unhealthy entertainment, but it can provide relief from any pain they may feel from missing their family, loved ones, and significant others. Of course, this comes at a high price, including a stay at a drug rehab center.
To Placate Boredom
While there is nothing to do except drive for hours on end, truckers may get bored and want to experience something that will help them get through the day or night. Drugs and alcohol can provide this momentary entertainment, but will eventually lead to treatment at an addiction recovery center after the habit becomes a dependence.
Low Paying Wages
As with any profession, low pay rates are correlated with addiction. When a truck driver isn’t paid well, spends weeks on the road away from their family, there is an increased risk of addiction. To help these people, we need to enforce a living wage that will allow them to work less and enjoy more time with their families. In order to make accidents less frequent, and addiction less common, we need to ensure that truck drivers are financially comfortable and happy.
With the amount of time spent on the road, and long hours behind the wheel, accidents are more common. If the driver has had a previous incident, the possibility of them looking to drugs to cope with physical and emotional pain are higher. Opioids are often prescribed for back pain, which a trucker could have from sitting for very long hours and weeks at a time as well as previous accidents. Once someone gets involved with opioids, the possibility of them moving on to heroin or other drugs increases.
To help truckers, we need to demand that they work reasonable hours with a living wage and adequate rest. Those who are addicted to something already, should seek assistance at an addiction treatment center. Call Intervention Association today to set up an appointment at one of our drug rehab clinics and get the treatment you need.