When It Is Time to Stop Driving

Memory Care Houston

Years of experience behind the wheel has made driving like second nature for older adults. But although driving can feel intuitive, it does require attentiveness, sound judgment, and rapid reactions. When a loved one has been told that he or she will require dementia care, it is time to start the conversation about alternative means of transportation.

Recognize the signs of unsafe driving.
Although it is preferable for an individual to stop driving before an accident occurs, many seniors do continue to drive despite experiencing warning signs that they should stop. Make it a habit to go with your loved one to various destinations, and observe whether he or she has any of these issues:

  • Improper lane changes
  • Intersection navigation difficulties
  • Directions/route problems
  • Improper speed
  • Confusion or anger issues
  • Gas and brake pedal mix-ups

Schedule a driving assessment.
Your loved one might not necessarily put much stock in your concerns unless the recommendation to stop driving comes from someone outside the family, such as a physician or driving instructor. It is a smart move to ask your loved one to have a professional driving evaluation. The results from the evaluation can help you convince your loved one that it is no longer safe for him or her to drive.

Convince your loved one to stop driving.
You know your loved one best. Consider the most effective and honest approach to have a conversation with your loved one about the need to stop driving. Some individuals may be persuaded to give up driving if they know that their loved ones are very worried about the issue. Others may be better convinced by considering the safety of other individuals on the roadways. Whichever approach you use, be mindful of the fact that driving is not only about getting from one place to another. It is reflective of an individual’s independence and freedom. Help your loved one explore alternative methods of transportation.

For comprehensive, loving Alzheimer’s care that your family can count on, you can put your trust in Avalon Memory Care. Our assisted living providers in Dallas, Houston, and Arlington treat our residents as if they were family because we genuinely care about their quality of life. Call us at (214) 752-7050, and ask us about how we connect our non-driving residents to the local community resources they need.