How to tell a senior to stop driving

For many seniors, driving is an integral part of their identity as independent adults who can travel where they want, and when they want.

But for a variety of health reasons, including poor eyesight and slow response time, many seniors are no longer able to drive. But that doesn’t mean handing over the keys is an easy thing for them to do.

According to an article in the Salt Lake Tribune newspaper, a recent study from the New England Journal of Medicine found that for seniors who were told by their doctor that they were unfit to drive had a much lower risk of being in an auto accident than whose doctors did not advise them against driving.

The Tribune reports that the specific change couldn’t be pinpointed, but it could be a result of either seniors giving up their cars, or simply driving less or more carefully after being warned by their doctor.

“Most people in our age group know that it’s inevitable and play around with the idea that it’s going to come and the only question is when,” 87 year-old Benjamin Benson, who lives in a Massachusetts assisted living community and recently quit driving, told the newspaper.