Senior Citizen Safe Driving Tips
Drive Safe Well Into Your Golden Years
Aging affects us all differently. Some will be going strong physically and mentally as they approach 100 years old, where others will be unfit to drive before they hit 70. No matter how you are handling the aging process, it’s important to make sure that you know how to stay safe behind the wheel.
There are a number of challenges that elderly drivers face that aren’t there when you’re younger. Take a proactive stance so that you’re not sitting in our offices talking auto body repairs.
Challenges Facing Senior Drivers
When you’re young and healthy, your biggest challenge is to remember that you’re not invincible. You can’t go as fast as you want without consequences, and you don’t have the time behind the wheel to ensure you can react to all kinds of situations.
As we age, however, new challenges come up.
Delayed Thinking – Also called cognitive impairment, it’s our brains slowing down. Medical conditions, like having a stroke can exacerbate the problem.
Reduced Agility – You may think that physical fitness isn’t necessary while driving, but arthritis, surgeries, and overall reduced muscle mass means that you’re not as quick behind the wheel.
Impaired Vision – Our eyes wear out like the rest of the body. Macular degeneration, glaucoma, cataracts, and overall diminished eyesight are all working against your driving abilities.
Driving Tips for Senior Drivers
So how can you make sure that you’re staying safe behind the wheel? Here are some tips so you can arrive safely, and make sure that other motorists arrive alive as well.
Test Your Vision and Hearing
Eyes and ears are important while driving. When they start to fail, you are at risk. Make sure that you are aware of any limitations by having your vision and hearing checked at least once each year so that you can stay ahead of the game.
Admit Your Limitations
If you have arthritis in your hands, and you can’t hold onto the steering wheel for long periods of time, admit to yourself that you can’t do it! It may be time to give up those cross-country drives. There are a number of accessories for vehicles to help with a variety of age-related issues, investigate those and know how they will ensure your safety.
You may not need to run a marathon or scale a mountain, but fitness goes far beyond those extremes. Keeping your body healthy means you’ll safely be able to glance over your shoulder, turn the steering wheel, and a host of other driving activities. Consider low-impact fitness like yoga, swimming, and a good old fashioned walk around the block to stay healthy.
Refresh Your Skills
There are driving courses designed for those aged 65 and up. They can help you to keep your skills sharp, and stay up-to-date on the latest laws and changing roads. Many things are the same, but some have changed and as technology improves, they will continue to change.
Consider the Conditions
Rain, snow, and dark can considerably impair even the healthiest of drivers. If you know your driving skills aren’t the best during optimal weather, don’t push them during the stormy weather. Nobody will think less of you if you decide to stay in for the evening because the roads are bad.
Auto Body Repair for All Ages
Whether you’re a beginner driver, or a seasoned veteran of more than 50 years, accidents happen. When they do, bring your vehicle to the best auto body repair shop in Billings and let us restore it to full factory safety standards for you.
Need to know more, or to make an appointment? Call us at 406-259-6328.