Promoting Mental Health Awareness For HGV Drivers.
- on Jul 20, 2022
Heavy goods vehicle drivers play an integral role globally as they facilitate the movement of goods between businesses and consumers whether locally or internationally. The drivers spend most of their time on the roads, work night shifts, encounter traffic on the roads, and are mostly away from friends and families as their nature of work is quite demanding. These factors have greatly contributed to challenges in the mental well-being of the drivers and most of the time they are stressed, depressed, have anxiety disorders, and even loneliness.
With this in mind, it is good to create awareness around mental health for the HGV drivers and offer tangible solutions to combat this menace. Here are the top ways to assist HGV drivers to stay on top of their game.
Provide resources. To begin with, the sure most way of creating mental health awareness is by providing resources to the drivers that they can use without fear of victimization or losing jobs. If a driver faces a challenge and has a hotline he can call for help, wouldn’t that be a great idea? Also, offering free counseling sessions would come in handy and is the first step in creating a safe environment for drivers. Training drivers to identify signs of mental health is also a great investment since when detected early, they will get help easily and will not have to deal with the stress alone.
Encourage socialization and connection with loved ones.
HGV drivers spend a lot of their time in isolation which may lead to loneliness. They should be encouraged to communicate constantly with friends and family via calls and with the advancement in technology, make use of video calls. In addition, carrying memoirs from family and friends is a great way to feel the love even when miles away. HGV drivers need to be encouraged to speak up about any issues they feel are affecting their well-being since a problem shared is a problem half solved.
Promote quality and enough sleep.
With the long working hours and stressful working conditions, HGV drivers need ample rest. Poor sleeping patterns may lead to mental health challenges such as depression and anxiety. If well rested, drivers will be in a position to focus more on the roads and stay alert too. Employers need to distribute properly working hours for HGV drivers and let them enough sleep during stopovers.
Exercise and a healthy lifestyle.
Exercise is also another great way to improve the mental well-being of HGV drivers. One can spend a lot of time crumpled up in the vehicle if they are stuck in traffic and what better way to relieve the tension than take a walk or even a simple jog? In addition, taking up healthy habits such as meditating during rest time will prepare a driver well for the journey ahead. Other healthy habits for great mental health include having a balanced diet, avoiding energy drinks, and staying hydrated.
In conclusion, most HGV drivers are male and as we all know, most men rarely open up or talk about the challenges facing them which in return saw a higher suicide rate in men. While we have a few women venturing into this industry, it is good to note that men have broken the barrier and are now openly seeking help when faced with mental health challenges. There needs to be less stigmatization around mental health so that individuals can be free to seek help from the multiple resources available both online and offline once they recognize and admit they have a problem that needs resolution.