For the most part, older adults often want to drive for the same reason sixteen-year-olds do: driving provides them independence. As they age, older adults worry about relinquishing their freedom. Indeed, 53 percent of older adults are concerned about remaining independent, while 26 percent say that losing independence is their greatest fear.
When age causes our health to decline, activities once considered simple can become challenging to complete without help. Everyday chores such as cooking, cleaning, and performing household maintenance can be a struggle. Driving is no exception.
Losing driving privileges is a significant hardship for most seniors. As active drivers, older adults enjoy the freedom to come and go as they please. Whether they want to visit their grandchildren, catch up with friends over coffee, or run daily errands, they can do so without hesitation. However, without the option to drive, older adults feel their activity choices are limited.
Mature adults often experience signs of deteriorating driving skills. Instances such as getting lost, frequent accidents, and traffic violation citations can indicate that an older adult is having trouble driving. Hearing loss, vision impairments, and medication side-effects can all contribute to declining driving ability. For the driver's safety—as well as that of passengers and other motorists—it's critical to watch for signs that driving skills are declining.
That's why Sunset Communities is partnering with the Lucas County Traffic Safety Program to help mature drivers increase their abilities and confidence behind the wheel. In a four-week workshop called, Keep Your Keys: Empowering Your Independence, experts will present information to help older adults improve their driving skills—and keep them driving safely longer.
The driving workshop takes place from 1:00-2:30 p.m. on four consecutive Thursdays (August 8, 15, 22, and 29) at The Woodlands, located at 4030 Indian Road in Toledo. Space is limited! To register for one or more of the sessions, call The Woodlands at 419-724-1220.
Here are some covered topics:
- Learn how certain medications and hearing loss affect driving ability. Blood pressure and hearing checks available.
- Discover the reasons why people tend to drive distracted—and how you can avoid driving that way.
- Roundabouts and safety.
- CarFit Check-Ups: Trained technicians will assess how well your car "fits" you (registration required).
- Hear expert speakers from ODOT, AAA, and the Ohio State Highway Patrol.
It can be hard for older adults to accept that their days of driving may be dwindling, but that doesn't mean those days are already behind you. Join Sunset for Keep Your Keys: Empowering Your Independence. It is never too late to learn new tips and tricks to become a better—and safer—driver.