This can be one of the hardest topics to bring up with an aging parent. For them, giving up their driving privileges may be comparable to turning the lock and throwing away the key, particularly if they do not know the other options available. It causes them to question their ability to live an independent life and leaves them wondering what the days ahead will entail.
Signs that it’s Time
There are several clues that will let you know it’s time to take a look at this vital concern:
- You notice an increasing number of dings and dents on your parent’s car.
- They are experiencing dizziness and loss of balance.
- Their senses such as vision and hearing are in decline.
- Noticing that your parent is making dangerous decisions when behind the wheel such as sudden lane changes, braking for no reason, and slowing down to a crawl.
- Have difficulty turning their head due to neck stiffness.
- They are getting lost in familiar places and showing an increase in confusion and anxiety.
Preventing Family Discord
If your parent is digging in their heels and you fear affecting your relationship by placing this mandate, consider a third party intervention. A Driver Rehabilitation Service tests the driving skills of seniors and may either be able to give them tips that allow them to drive safely, place restrictions such as driving times and locations, or may, ultimately, determine that it is time for them to give up their license. Their doctor can also determine that, for declining health or cognitive function reasons, they are required to release their driving rights.
Cup Half Full
Help them to maintain a positive outlook by suggesting alternatives. Post the number for the local volunteer community service that offers free rides for homebound seniors. Check into Drive a Senior, a national organization of volunteers, to see if there are members in your area. Accompany them on public transportation a few times so that they can get use to the process.
Many seniors feel that this loss will diminish their social circle and activities. In many ways, it can actually expand it. They get to know the volunteer driver’s that assist them who may ultimately become their biggest advocates. They accept rides from friends in exchange for helping them out in some way. They engage more regularly with the local senior community center which offers camaraderie as well as classes, activities, and social outings. Help your parent find these types of options so they don’t feel like they are being an added burden to you or other family members.
Senior Care Provider
Consider obtaining the services of a senior care provider who can assist with transportation as well as accompany your parent on their initial excursions into the world of public transportation. They can accompany them on walks, prepare healthy meals, do the grocery shopping and assist with the daily activities of living. They often become the closest of companions and allies that your parent can count on in the days and years ahead.
If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring professional senior care in Pacifica, CA, call the caring staff at Aviva In-Home Care. Call today: (415) 795-2203
At Aviva, we also use the latest in health technology to maximize opportunities for communication between all members of our client’s care circles. We utilize nursing oversight to ensure that we are in compliance with physician orders, and that our careplans are being properly administered. Lastly, Aviva is a proud member of The Senior’s Choice, a national network of leading home care agencies that share best practices and focus on continual improvement.
As owner of the business, I also promise to you my direct involvement in your loved ones care, and will always make myself available for feedback and improvements in our service. I look forward to working with you and your loved one on creating a care plan that is perfectly suited to the family's needs. Thank you for considering Aviva as your care partner.
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