At some point during your time as a caregiver, you’re going to find yourself wondering if your aging family member should still get behind the wheel. Driving can become a serious safety issue for your senior and the sooner you’re able to address the situation, the better for everyone involved.
Check out Your State’s Laws Regarding Older Drivers
Every state has slightly different laws around the topic of older adults and when they need to leave driving behind. Some states are incredibly strict regarding this topic, while others are very lenient. In some states, your senior may still be able to drive even if her doctor says that she shouldn’t drive. It’s important to know what the laws are in your area so that you know what you’re up against legally.
Ask Her Doctor What to Watch for in Her Driving
Talk to your aging adult’s doctor about her specific health conditions and what you should be watching out for in terms of problems with her driving. There may be some specific symptoms or signals that let you know that it’s time to get serious about restricting her driving.
Watch Closely for Those Signs of Trouble
Once you know what to watch out for in your elderly family member’s situation, be on the lookout for those signals. Look for opportunities to ride along with your aging adult at the wheel and observe how she drives. Some of the behaviors that indicate that she shouldn’t be driving may be obvious, while others are going to be more subtle.
Get a Driving Assessment
The Department of Motor Vehicles in your area or even driving schools can offer professional driving assessments of your senior’s abilities behind the wheel. Your senior may feel that you’re biased because you’re her caregiver, but a professional won’t be biased. Professional driving assessors are also looking out for your senior’s safety while she’s on the road, but they’re impartial.
Make sure that you offer your senior some alternatives to driving on her own, whether that’s with you or with senior care providers who are on call for transportation help.
If you or an aging loved one are considering caregivers in Wall, NJ, please call the caring staff at Care Street Home Care. You can reach our Mercer/Burlington Division at (609) 496-5666.
Dr. Shelly, as he is fondly known, has served as an Alzheimer’s Support Group Facilitator in Mercer County and is a Certified Dementia Instructor. Knowledgeable, compassionate, and unusually devoted, his guidance is crucial in helping families understand their options and render decisions for their loved ones’ care plan. Dr. Shelly’s extensive experience, sincere and pleasant demeanor, and professional affiliations have made him a vital asset to Care Street.
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