You may be facing or will soon be facing the tough decision of taking away the keys from a loved one. The Hartford shared this informative article on deciding when to stop driving once dementia starts to set in.
In the early stages of dementia, many people usually are still socially engaged and able to manage daily activities, including safe driving. But, all people with irreversible dementia will eventually become unsafe to drive because of the degenerative, progressive nature of the brain disease. Most information about dementia warns against driving, but doesn't help families determine how to help the driver make that very important, and sometimes very emotional, transition to passenger.
Those who have a loved one with dementia struggle with a number of caregiving challenges from medical and daily care to financial and legal matters. Driving can be an immediate and life-threatening issue–making it a family priority. A diagnosis alone may not be sufficient reason for a person to stop driving, but when it's clearly no longer safe for the person to drive, caregivers must take action.
What Can Families Do?
- Each family must select strategies that will work for its unique situation. There is no easy answer, no right way.
- Asking a person to stop driving can be a delicate, highly emotional matter. Begin discussions and planning early, and involve the person with dementia. Open, early and continual communication can help the person with dementia and the family to agree on a course of action before a crisis occurs.
- The Conversation Planner: How Can I Have Good Conversations about Not Driving can help your customers plan progressive and productive conversations.
- The Agreement with My Family about Driving can serve as the starting point for meaningful discussions about driving.
Visit iMarket to download a copy of At the Crossroads: A Guide to Alzheimer's Disease, Dementia and Driving.