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Friday, December 8, 2017

Be Safe Out There=== Tips for Older Drivers

We all know that we can not stay young forever. The age of those living in the United States is getting older. The physical,  mental and sensory abilities of older individuals can decrease the ability to do things for those that are getting older. Driving is one of those activities. 
The thoughts between older folks driving and Occupational therapist is vehicle safety. Older Driver Safety Awareness Week occurs this year December 4th - 8th. The goal is to help all understand th importanc of mobility and transportation to ensure older adults remain active in the community. To allow older adults to continue to shop, work and volunteer without barrier to get around. 

At the age of 16 for many of us driving became a right of passage. A gateway to freedom and part of the growing up process This for many mean that we have the right to drive as long as we have the ability to do so. As we get older though reaction time slows, night blindness is a new behavior and pain many older individuals also have pain that may hinder driving skills. Learning ideas and tips can help those in their golden years drive as long as they can. 
  • Arthritis in hands makes small things like seat belts hard to manage. One tip is to attach a cloth loop to the seat belt to make grabbing the belt easier. To depress the seat belt latch use a small tool to press in the click button. 
  • Older drivers may have a bit of anxiety with driving. Not being able to see the best to drive at night may be one of those fears. For many older drivers choosing to drive only during daylight hours offers a bit of relief. Errands should be planned to be done at times where the roads are not as busy. Whenever possible accept rides when you are not able to drive yourself. 
  • No driver should use a cell phone while driving. for older drivers with less reaction time this may be even more dangerous. They should look into using a caller I.D. and not texting or talking on phone while driving

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