A Guide to Safe Driving for Senior Citizens
As people grow older, it is quite normal for them to experience a
decline in certain abilities and health. Many seniors often succumb to
failing eyesight and hearing, changing perception and slower reflexes.
All of these factors can greatly affect their driving, leading to unsafe
conditions for themselves, passengers and other vehicles on the roads.
Seniors as well as family members should actively keep an eye out for
indications of declining abilities and take measures to reduce any
risks. A common fear among elderly people is that they might lose their
independence by not being able to drive on their own. Read on to learn
about alternatives for seniors and ways to help them drive safely.
Understand How Old Age Affects Driving Abilities and How to Recognize Symptoms
- Dementia and other types of cognitive impairment can affect memory, perception, judgment and other vital ways in which we normally process information.
- Deterioration in eyesight, hearing and motor skills are the most frequent aspects that affect the seniors drive.
- An older person’s ability to react quickly to sudden or emergency situations can be greatly reduced.
- Diseases such as diabetes, arthritis or Parkinson’s lead to difficulties in ordinary daily life for seniors as well as when they are driving.
- Take a self-assessment quiz online to find out how your driving safety measures up.
- Family members should watch out for lowered levels of concentration, awareness and disorientation in seniors who are driving.
- Use an interactive tool to understand the main areas of the body related to driving that are affected in old age and how common medications can also add to these effects.
- Dexterity and muscle strength decreases in old people and can make long drives quite challenging.
- Even though some symptoms may not be visually obvious, seniors may still be at risk for changes to their mental abilities.
- If a senior often gets lost or very stressed when they are driving, it may be a sign that they need to stop or seek alternative methods.
- While seniors do have more driving experience, it is important to be honest with yourself and recognize disabilities or weaknesses that may prevent you from driving.
- Remember that even healthy seniors can make mistakes in driving or become distracted by the radio or too many people talking in the car.
- Newer technology built into cars as well as changing driving laws can create a great deal of confusion in older drivers.
- Injuries or long-term diseases can take a toll on joint mobility in older people, making driving a difficult task.
- Night vision in seniors declines over time and driving at night with these conditions can be a huge risk.
- Overall, seniors with or without mental diseases have been found to display lowered standards of driving.
Reduce Driving Risks for Seniors
Tips for Seniors to Drive Safely
Other Resources for Aging Drivers