Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Driving Safety Tips for Seniors

Older drivers can still be good, safe drivers, but there are some things to consider both for your safety and the safety of others.  The Mayo Clinic recommends that seniors stay as active as possible in their day-to-day life which helps to maintain overall strength, flexibility, and range of motion.  Drivers need to be able to turn and look over their shoulder and move their head with ease.  They must be able to keep a firm grip on the steering wheel and legs need to be strong enough to apply pressure to the gas pedal or brake. 
A senior’s peripheral vision can decrease with age or from certain medications and other eye problems may cause drivers to have trouble seeing in the dark or experience blurred vision.  Hearing problems can interfere with detecting sounds of sirens from emergency vehicles or approaching cars.  Be vigilant about scheduling vision and hearing tests regularly as part of your wellness care and follow your doctor’s advice as to how often they should be done.  Many problems can be corrected if caught early enough. 
Remember that certain medications can cause drowsiness so make sure you know the side effects of your prescription drugs and do not drive if you are feeling sleepy.  It may be a good idea to limit trips in the car to daylight hours and when the weather is good.  Keep in mind that a person’s reaction time slows with age as do their motor skills.  You may need to re-evaluate your driving every so few months, especially if you find yourself having incidences of accidents that almost happen. 
The MedicineNet website has some safe driving tips for seniors:
Planning before you leave:
  • plan to drive streets you know 
  • add extra time for travel if conditions are bad
  • don't drive when you are stressed or tired
While you are driving:
  • always wear you seat belt
  • stay off the cell phone
  • avoid distractions
MorningStarof Sparks’ unique mission statement “to honor, to serve, to invest” sets us apart from other senior communities.  Committed to creating a true home for residents within a gorgeous setting, our foundation is built on honoring God, valuing our seniors and hiring staff with a felt calling to serve.  We invite you to schedule a visit to learn more about our exceptional senior living.

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