Health changes may affect your driving skills over time, as aging begins to alter your vision, hearing and mobility.
You may find it more difficult to see people, objects and movement outside your direct line of sight. It may take longer to read or identify street and traffic signs or even familiar places. This can increase the chances of accidents. Eye diseases, such as glaucoma, cataracts, and macular degeneration, as well as some medicines, can also cause vision problems.
Similar to eyesight, our hearing can change. Older adults may not hear horns, sirens or even noises from their own car. Hearing loss can be a problem because these sounds warn you when you may need to pull over or get out of the way.
As you age, your joints may stiffen, and your muscles may weaken. Known as arthritis, these changes can make it harder to look back, turn the steering wheel quickly or brake safely. Your reflexes might get slower as well. You may also find that you have a shorter attention span, making it harder to complete the multiple tasks involved with driving.
If you’ve had an increase in accidents, get distracted while driving or have problems staying in your lane, it may be time to discuss alternate transportation options with your family and doctor. Your local senior center may also have access to community resources to assist with delivery of meals, transportation to and from medical appointments and errands.
This health tip is brought to you by Tabitha, your answer for Senior Care in 28 Nebraska counties. To learn more, start with Tabitha at Tabitha.org, or call 800.487.3484 | 402.873.7047.
Nonprofit Tabitha is Nebraska’s industry-leading and quality award-winning Senior Care expert. Serving friends and neighbors for over 130 years and encompassing 28 Nebraska counties, Tabitha offers results-driven rehabilitation, at-home health care, innovative living communities and compassionate hospice services. Tabitha is Your Answer for Senior Care, learn more at Tabitha.org.