As we age, we experience changes, both physical and mental, that can affect our ability to do everyday tasks like driving. The American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) has designated an entire week (December 7-15, 2015) to educating people on ways to ensure road safety into our later years.
Preparing for the future and setting up options for transportation as one ages can help people be more independent, should their mobility status change. Families should talk openly about concerns they may have with their older loved one in a safe environment. Occupational therapists can perform screenings and evaluations for driver safety, to give the driver and their family a sense of how well they’re doing. OTs can provide a treatment plan for older adults to brush up on their driving skills or develop solutions to issues that are causing an individual trouble.
An important focus of Older Driver Safety Awareness Week is ensuring that older adults remain actively engaged in their communities, while keeping the roads safe for them and the people around them. Planning ahead of time can improve the quality of life for older adults and will help these individuals aging in place. For more tips and information on older driver safety (including in-depth podcasts from the AOTA), click here.