Your elderly family member may be getting to a stage in which she should no longer be driving. But that doesn’t mean that she’s just going to hand over the keys. You might need to ask some questions of her and of others.
Can She Drive Better at One Time of Day than Another?
For some aging drivers, driving during the day is not a big problem. Driving at night or during low-light conditions, on the other hand, is a different story. This can mean that your senior has bad night vision or that she’s experiencing other issues, such as cognitive difficulties that are more pronounced when she can’t see as well.
Is Her Vision Affected?
Have you noticed trouble with your senior’s vision during other activities? If your senior’s peripheral vision is a problem, for instance, she might feel as if people are constantly sneaking up on her. That’s a problem when she’s behind the wheel.
Does She Get Confused Easily, Especially While Multitasking?
Driving is, in large part, multitasking. There’s a lot to keep up with while someone is behind the wheel and that might be something that is difficult for your elderly family member to do anymore. If she’s getting confused easily, this can be a sign that driving is becoming much more difficult.
Has She Been in More than One Accident Recently?
Even one accident is not great news, but there might be extenuating circumstances such as the actions of other drivers causing the wreck. But if your elderly family member is experiencing a variety of accidents, even small ones where she hits curbs or other objects, that is definitely something to be concerned about. It might be a matter of time before your elder or someone else is seriously hurt.
Are Other People Worried about Her Driving?
Pay attention to how other people react to her driving. If she has friends who refuse to let her drive, for instance, that is a red flag. Other people, such as neighbors, might also come to you and express concern about how your elderly family member has acted behind the wheel. Pay attention to these reports and do some investigating of your own.
If your answers are tending toward yes for these questions, it’s probably time to have a serious talk about your senior’s ability to keep driving. Have a backup plan in mind, such as having elder care providers do the driving for her, until you determine for certain what the right answer is.
If you or an aging loved one are considering Elder Care Services in Walpole MA, or anywhere in Eastern Massachusetts, please call the caring staff at CARE Resolutions – (508) 906-5572.