Driving is often seen as a way of maintaining independence and responsibility, so most seniors tend to get frustrated at the idea of giving up their keys. However, age-related health issues can make it unsafe for seniors to drive. If seniors keep driving after a certain point, they may be a danger to themselves and others on the road. Keep an eye out for the following signs your aging parent may need to start relying on other forms of transportation besides driving.
Increased Number of Driving Citations
Many seniors unknowingly try to compensate for diminished driving skills by slowing down or driving too fast. Aging adults are also more likely to do things like skip a stop sign, run a red light, or pull out in front of a car because they did not notice the object, which could lead to a much higher number of warnings, tickets, and other traffic citations.
Family caregivers who have difficulty finding time to provide transportation for their aging loved ones should consider hiring a professional caregiver. In New Hampshire, home care providers can benefit aging adults in a variety of ways. From cooking nutritious meals to offering timely medication reminders, the dedicated caregivers at Home Care Assistance are available to help your elderly loved one 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Bad Results on Recent Eye Tests
If your parent is regularly getting eye tests, you may want to stay updated about the results. Failing eyesight can make it almost impossible for seniors to drive. If your loved one has poor vision or is being diagnosed with eye conditions, he or she may need to quit driving.
Vision impairment can make it difficult for adults to remain independent in the golden years. Living independently is important for seniors who want to maintain a high quality of life. For some, this simply means receiving help with tasks that have become more challenging to manage over time. Even when families have the best intentions, they may not have the time to provide the care their elderly loved ones need and deserve. If your loved one needs help for a few hours a day or a few days a week, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a trusted provider of respite care New Hampshire seniors can depend on.
Large Number of Accidents or Close Calls
If your loved one begins experiencing an unusually high number of driving issues, it may be a sign he or she needs to stop driving. Accidents can be large or even little things like scraping the mailbox, hitting a curb, or getting a dent in the car. Seniors may also report higher numbers of near-accidents occurring while they are changing lanes or parking. Increased numbers of accidents are signs that reflexes and mobility are decreased.
Confusion While Driving
If your loved one keeps calling for directions or getting lost while trying to reach familiar places, it may be a sign that he or she no longer has the cognitive skills to drive. You should also express concern if your loved one is getting confused and constantly doing things like stopping at green lights, missing turns and exits, or taking an unusually long amount of time to reach a location.
Recent Health Diagnosis
Many health conditions can make it difficult for seniors to drive safely, including arthritis and stroke. If your loved one is diagnosed with a new or worsening health condition, assess his or her ability to drive. You also need to check your loved one’s medications to see if he or she is taking anything that could cause issues.
A decreased ability to drive is just one of the many issues adults face as they age. Seniors can face a variety of age-related challenges. Though some families choose to take on the caregiving duties, there may come a time when they need a trusted New Hampshire home care provider. Families sometimes need respite from their duties so they can focus on their other responsibilities, and some seniors need around-the-clock assistance that their families are not able to provide. Home Care Assistance is here to help. To schedule a free in-home consultation, call us at (603) 471-3004.