If the patient still seems to have healthy cognitive, physical, and visual abilities, we may clear them to return to driving as they had been before, though maybe with some tips or training to help them maintain safety on the road.
Restricted Driving Privilege
If the patient is experiencing increased difficulty in certain areas but is still highly functioning, they may be able to continue driving with some restrictions. They may not be allowed to drive at night or on the highway if this would be too difficult for them. It is possible that they will need to undergo special training to learn to compensate for their deficits or break certain habits.
Adaptive Driving Devices
Some patients may not be able to drive a vehicle normally but may qualify to have special adaptive driving devices. These can include equipment such as steering wheel knobs to help arthritic hands grip the wheel better, or pedal extenders to aid in reaching the gas and brakes. With the help of these accessories, they can extend the years that they are able to stay in the driver’s seat. This can be an expensive option in some cases, and the driver may need to meet certain criteria from the DMV to maintain their license, so careful planning and discussion with a CDRS are needed to proceed with it.
Retirement from Driving
Sadly, some of our patients will eventually progress to the point where they have to hand over the keys. Fortunately, when this happens, it does not necessarily mean an end to one’s independence. Transportation plans can be developed that involve making use of family members, public transit, and ride services like Uber, Lyft, and Metro Taxi. No matter where you are, we will work with you to determine the best course of action to help you keep an active life.