older person drivingReduced reaction time, vision, coordination and cognitive speed are among several changes that are a normal part of aging. Being a senior citizen doesn't automatically mean you have to stop driving. The question is whether you can adjust your habits so you can remain a safe driver. In addition to these adjustments, it's important to stay on top of physical conditions and changes that may affect how you drive.

1. Avoid Difficult Driving Situations

If you have difficulty seeing at night, have someone else drive you or use public transportation. Avoid driving in bad weather such as rain, fog or storms. Since weather can change throughout the day, check the weather forecast before getting into your car. If there are specific driving situations that make you uncomfortable, pay attention to these feelings and avoid these situations by adjusting your route.

2. Use a Car That's Easy to Drive

Choose a car with an automatic transmission, power steering and power brakes.

Other features to look for include:

  • Larger and brighter instrument displays.
  • Large side view mirrors.
  • Thicker steering wheels for a better grip.
  • Power mirrors.
  • Power seats.
  • Extendable sun visors.

3. Allow Plenty of Empty Road Space Ahead of You

Allow four seconds of driving distance between you and the car in front. Look for a stationary object such as a sign or an overpass and count to four. Start the count as the car in front passes the object. The object should reach you when you've counted to four.

4. Plan Ahead by Looking Farther Down the Road

Stay on top of the road situation by paying attention to what is happening well ahead of you. This gives you time to plan your course of action, such as slowing down or changing lanes.

5. Don't Drive When Using Certain Medications

Carefully read the label on medications for symptoms that interfere with driving, such as drowsiness. Ask your doctor whether his or her prescribed medications—or over-the-counter meds—will affect your driving.

6. See Your Doctor on a Regular Basis

Keep abreast of any conditions that may affect your driving. If you have any concerns of your own, don't wait until the next scheduled physical. Book one now!

Driving well into your senior years is a distinct possibility so long as you maintain your health and make yourself aware of changes that could affect driving habits.

Our goal is to help keep you safe. Call Buschbach Insurance Agency at (708) 423-2350 for more information on Oak Lawn auto insurance.
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