Most families don’t consider taking away their parents’ car keys until an accident happens. Is that the best indicator for determining when his driving skills have diminished?
While an accident is a good indicator, it’s often one that comes too late. There were likely many signs before this crash occurred. These are better ways to help you decide when it’s time for your dad to stop driving.
Check the Car and Parking Area in the Garage or Outside
Look at your dad’s car. Are there a lot of unexplained dings and scratches. Check his garage door and frame. If you see areas where the car hit the frame or door, he may not be controlling his driving as well as he needs to.
If he parks outside, look to see how straight the car is parked. It doesn’t have to be perfect. If he’s taking up two or three spaces with his parking job, there could be issues.
Sign Him Up For an Assessment
See if your local DMV does driving assessments. In some states, older drivers are reassessed, but not every state does. If you live in a state where it doesn’t happen, you can find out if there are any programs.
If the DMV can’t help, check AARP for driving classes. They regularly hold courses for older drivers. That can help you get reassurance that your dad’s driving is okay.
Print Out a Cognitive Screening
AAA has a printable self-assessment that helps older drivers assess their driving skills. Rather than let your dad answer the questions, print them out and have him be the driver during a trip out. Observe his skills and see what the test results say. If there are concerns, there are two things to do next.
Schedule Medical Appointments
You need to have your dad’s general practitioner and eye doctor check his ability to drive. The eye doctor will check his vision to make sure he meets legal requirements. Eye disease and conditions will be diagnosed with a thorough exam. Plus, the eye doctor will know if his peripheral vision is good enough.
The general practitioner will assess his muscle tone and control. His reasoning skills and reaction times can also be gauged. If there are concerns these doctors will let you know.
What Do You Do Next?
So, your dad cannot drive anymore. You’ve taken his keys away. How do you handle his transportation needs when you have a full-time job?
Home care aides cover a lot of services that can help you out. The caregivers can schedule their dad’s appointments and drive him to and from the office. Schedule transportation and other home care services today with one quick phone call.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Elder Care in Alpharetta, GA, please call the caring staff at Always Care Nursing Service today.Call for Assistance: (404) 266-8773 or (800) 989-7828
Administrator of 3 Florida (Always Care) Home Health Agencies for over Fourteen years.
Always Care of Georgia since 2001
Served as a 1st Lt. In the US Army
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