Tag Archives: older drivers

Good Ideas on a Tough Topic for Seniors

Joan Medeiros is an elder law attorney in Sacramento to whom I have given credit in the past for some very good ideas. Here, I want to give her credit for two reasons. The first is the topic – older drivers. The second reason is some solid ideas for families – and elders – on that topic.

Older Driver

Below, I have pasted her latest email. Since she does not have a blog site that I know of, I cannot just paste a URL. I don’t think she will sue me. 🙂

Turning Over the Keys: Helping older drivers make the tough decision 

We all want to be in control, to go where we want at our leisure.  As we age, however, our senses and reaction times begin to slow which can make getting behind the wheel increasingly hazardous. It is important to be realistic about the driving abilities of loved ones as they reach a certain stage and to prepare accordingly. Not only will it keep seniors safe, but planning ahead will help them financially as they make other arrangements for transportation.

The first step is to reduce the need to drive. Find ways to bring the things they need right to them, like ordering groceries online for delivery and encouraging in-home appointments. Suggest that they invite friends and family over for regular visits instead of going out. They may be surprised by how many things are possible from the comfort of their own home.

For the times your loved ones need to, or want to, venture elsewhere, look into other transportation options. Although there is usually no need to quit driving all at once, look to family, friends, taxis, and public transportation when you can, especially for longer trips. Use the money you’ve been saving, along with what would have been spent on gas, on alternate modes of transportation. Their town may even have designated senior transportation services.

The time to start making this transition may be sooner than you or your loved ones think. Don’t wait until an accident leaves them with no alternative. It may be time to start talking about limiting driving if they report noticing subtle difficulties, like trouble reading traffic signs or delayed breaking. Keep an eye out for small dings in your loved one’s car or surrounding items, like the mailbox or garage door, along with slower response time or difficulty finding their way around familiar territory. Ask them to watch for these things as well.

Asking a loved one to turn over their keys can be tough but with an open dialogue, the right support system and reasonable alternatives in place to ensure that they can continue to live an active lifestyle, a smooth transition is feasible.

One of the most important points Joan makes is, don’t wait for an accident or piles of tickets. Your loved ones’ lives – and those of others – are far more important than driving.

Best wishes, and add your thoughts, please. Bert


Elders, Doctors and Driving

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I recently read a depressing article on agingcare.com, entitled, “Why Doctors Don’t Like to Discuss Driving with Older Patients“. It is depressing to me and to those of us at Support For Home In-Home Care because we have seen it … Continue reading


Seniors Giving Up Driving

I have written a number of posts in this blog on the issue of seniors and driving.  It is such an important and sensitive issue for elders and their families and other loved ones.  I was happy to see the … Continue reading


Older Drivers, Again

I know, I know, this is an issue I have written about before.  I am sure I will write about it again.  And, for the sake of full disclosure, by most definitions I am a senior myself, and many of … Continue reading