By Cozette Eldridge ,RSVP Field Representative
While traffic safety is important for all drivers, seniors experience physical changes that can affect their driving abilities. Although some seniors can drive well into their 70s, 80s, and 90s, others cannot. It can be a tough adjustment for people who equate driving as a form of independence, and losing their driving privileges to losing control and spontaneity in their lives. There are simple safety steps older adults can take to ensure they are driving safely. Good Vision: The ability to see clearly while driving changes with age. A 45 year old requires four times as much
light as a 19 year old, and a 60 year old requires 10 times as much. Get an annual eye exam. Limit driving to the daytime as much as possible.
While driving, look ahead of your vehicle for other obstacles or hazards. Glance frequently in your rearview mirror. Keep headlights, taillights and windows clean. Many seniors take medication that may affect safe driving, leading to drowsiness and confusion.
Seniors should talk to their doctors about the effects their medications may have on their driving abilities. Be cognizant of the warnings on your medications before getting behind the wheel. Do not drive if any medications cause fatigue or disorientation. Driving takes strength, flexibility and coordination and seniors should continue to participate in physical exercise to keep their motor skills sharp.
Mental fitness is also important as older minds sometimes react more slowly. A person’s driving ability is dependent on many factors. Age is not always the best predictor of one’s ability to drive safely. If you or your loved one has had a series of minor accidents, is unable to concentrate, is getting lost on familiar roads or is unable to read or recognize ordinary road signs, it may be time to step out from behind the wheel.
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OCT. 28 – NOV. 1
MON. Biscuits/Sausage Gravy, Scrambled Eggs, Potatoes, Pears, Orange Juice
TUES. Pork Chops/Bacon, Au Gratin Potatoes, Buttermilk Salad, Pea Salad, Roll, Fruit
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