Owners' Blog

Are Older Drivers Actually Safer Drivers?

By Hilary and Greg Eldridge

As a family caregiver, one of your most important priorities is to make sure that your aging parent stays as safe and healthy as possible. This means that you evaluate their activities and daily tasks to ensure that you can keep them protected and preserve their well-being and quality of life as they age in place. One activity that you might be thinking about is driving. If your parent needs care, you may assume that they are not able to drive safely. You may even wonder if older drivers are capable of driving safely.

It may reassure you to know that the answer to this is yes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are many factors that make many older drivers even safer drivers than younger ones. These factors include:

  • Older adults tend to be far more likely to wear their seatbelts than younger adults. In fact, up to 69 percent of older adults wear their seatbelts regularly, compared to between 38 and 55 percent of younger adults, with the rate increasing with age.
  • Older drivers are more likely than younger adults to choose safe conditions in which to drive, and to avoid dangerous conditions.
  • Seniors are far less likely to drive while they are impaired than younger adults.

These factors, however, do not change that adults are more vulnerable, meaning that if they are in an accident, they are more likely to experience an injury or death. As a caregiver this means that you should not automatically assume that your parent is unable to drive safely. Take time to evaluate your parent as an individual and determine the risks that they might face so that together you can make the decision about their continued driving that is right for them.

In the course of your caregiver journey with your aging parent you will make a wide variety of important decisions. One of the most important that you will make is how to ensure that your parent's needs are met effectively and efficiently. Fortunately elder care can make this decision much simpler. An elderly home care services provider can be with your parent on a customized schedule to ensure that their needs are met in the way that is right for them while also keeping you at the forefront of their care routine. This care provider can fill care gaps, be with your parent when your schedule keeps you from being with them as often as you would like, handle tasks that you are not able to or are uncomfortable handling, and boost their social interaction and emotional health with companionship and support.

https://www.cdc.gov/motorvehiclesafety/older_adult_drivers/index.html
https://www.aota.org/Conference-Events/Older-Driver-Safety-Awareness-Week.aspx

If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring elder care in Lilburn, GA, please contact the caring staff at Home Helpers, call (678) 430-8511.