Elders with Memory Problems May Have Driving Difficulties


Seniors who have memory issues and related decision-making and attention disorders may have challenges when it comes to driving, a Canadian study stated in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease.

Specifically, those with added impairments like difficulty with quick decision making or multi-tasking are specifically inclined to having challenges with driving tasks such as turning left or keeping in a specific lane.

Since driving entails multiple cognitive functions such as memory, attention, and visuospatial ability, it can also be affected by mild cognitive impairment.

As a whole, those with mild cognitive issues tend to exhibit double as much driving errors compared with healthy drivers.

Moreover, those with multiple cognitive impairments have a greater risk for driving errors, that to include crossing the center line, straying out the driver lane, and not catching the stop signs. Such people also ended up making errors when taking a left turn.

The research findings do not necessarily imply stopping elders to stop driving. However, there should be careful monitoring of declines in cognitive impairment and ability to drive. With this, home care service providers may also consider these factors when caring for their patients. Likewise, family members as well as the patients themselves can take note of this study in promoting safety and preventing untoward incidents related to driving.

— Image Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

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