When should your Parents Stop Driving?

5/19/2016

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There is no doubt that driving is a useful and fun activity. At the same time, driving requires high levels of alertness, fast response, and making quick decisions based on the current situation on the road. While it is true that obtaining a license is not related to the driver’s age, it is also true that the process of aging makes driving impossible for some people. There are many senior citizens who simply don’t want to stop driving because they link this activity to their independence. So, there is a good chance that your parents will try to convince you that they are driving safely and that there is no need to be worried. However, there are some signs that can tell you that it is the best idea for your parents to stop driving and use other means of transport. Of course, once you tell them that it is time to quit one of their favorite activities, you should also explain to them that they won’t lose anything, that you are here for them and that you are suggesting this for their own good. Now let’s check some of these signs.

First of all, there are many senior citizens that start getting lost even when they are driving in a location that they have visited numerous times like their children’s home or their friend’s home or the local mall. This might be a sign of dementia too, so you should definitely suggest thorough research.

If you are a passenger in your parent’s car and you notice that they ignore the traffic signals and signs then this is another thing that you should take into consideration. This is probably a result of lack of attention and visual problems. In any case, driving in this condition is not a smart idea.

The elderly often become confused or even angry while they are driving. In case your parent has always been a patient driver and in the recent period they are showing signs of aggressiveness and impatience advise them to limit the use of the car or to stop driving completely.

Getting involved in a minor car accident is not something unusual. As a matter of fact, hundreds of thousands of minor car accidents occur in the US every year. However, if your parents are involved in more than 3 minor car accidents in less than a month, this is an indicator that they should take a break and do some tests before they start driving again.

Finally, even if you are not an experienced driver or if you are not a driver at all, in case your parent gets honked at from many drivers when they driving, they are probably driving unsafely.

Remember that older driver are sensitive and they usually don’t want to quit this activity. This is the reason why it is a good idea to ask their doctor to tell them that it is dangerous to drive when they are not completely fit for driving.

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