Those who are entering the sunset years of life often grow discouraged by the limitations that come with advancing age. Driving, a sign of independence, may top the list of activities that the elderly wish to hold onto well past appropriateness; for some drivers, skills may begin to decline even in their 40s. Acting proactively, however, you can sometimes extend the time you can safely negotiate a car’s moving mass. Take these steps to stave off or work around inevitable declines in driving functionality.

Note Conditions

Avoid sliding behind the wheel when rain, ice or snow are forecast; otherwise, you may end up sliding off the road or into an oncoming car. While auto body repair Denver CO can fix much of a damaged car, your life is not worth the risk. You lessen the chance of sending yourself or others to the hospital by driving on clear days. At the same time, do not drive at night. Headlights can not provide a good view of distant objects and signs during dark hours.

Keep Skills Sharp

All drivers should periodically update their driving skills. As you age you should perform this task annually. You can start by simply taking online self-tests. Even better, look into one of the many elderly driving courses offered. Performing physical maneuvers under the guidance of an instructor can provide two benefits: First, your instructor will teach you new tricks to enhance your driving. Second, your guide will objectively evaluate whether you may have reached a point where you should stop driving.

Be Medically Proactive

While you may suffer a physical decline in many areas, these effects can be gradual enough that you are not aware of them. As a result, schedule doctors’ appointments with your primary care physician every six months. Sign up for hearing and vision exams annually in addition to the routine physicals. In all cases, ask your examiners to assess test results in the context of your ability to drive safely.

Stay Alert

Your doctors will also assess whether any medications you take will interfere with your safe driving. However, pay attention to any other factors that can have a negative impact. Avoid driving while sleepy, for example, and mute your cell phone so you are not tempted to answer it.

If you mentally prepare yourself for when your driving abilities have become too deficient for safe travels, you can plan for that day. In the meantime, by proactively managing your approach to driving as you age, you can forestall reaching the end of the road.

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