Driving with a medical condition can increase the risk of road accidents and injuries. Medical conditions must be managed properly in order to prevent road mishaps. Certain medical conditions can affect an individual’s ability to drive. Individuals suffering from one or more medical conditions are strongly advised to coordinate closely with their physicians in order to determine if they can drive or not. Some prescribed and over-the-counter medications used to treat certain medical conditions may affect a person’s ability to drive. The doctor can advise a person about the side effects of medications especially on day to day activities such as driving. Negligence to see a doctor is not only dangerous to the individual concerned but also to other people.
Any medical condition that inhibits one’s physical strength, mental alertness, dexterity, and reasoning can prevent a person’s ability to drive safely. The following are some common medical conditions that could affect a person’s driving ability.
Arthritis can cause pain, swelling and stiffness of the joints. This medical condition is usually common among aging people. Arthritis may hamper or limit a person’s ability to move affected body parts such as neck, shoulders, hands, and legs. An individual suffering from arthritis may find it difficult to look over his or her shoulder when changing lanes or looking at opposite directions, turn the steering wheel, or step on the brake and gas pedals. Sometimes, something as simple as putting on the seat belt can be hard when arthritis strikes. A doctor can prescribe medications and therapy to effectively manage arthritis. When arthritis is properly managed, an individual may drive safely.
Uncontrolled diabetes can result to health complications such as hypoglycemia, vision problems, nerve damage, heart disease, and even amputation. A doctor can prescribe medications to a diabetic to control his or her diabetes and prevent complications from developing. A person with controlled diabetes can be eligible to drive upon the advice of the physician.
Seizure disorders may prevent a person from driving unless the seizures are controlled. In some cities, in order to be eligible to drive, an individual must be episode free for at least three months. People with seizure disorders should have regular check-ups to monitor health condition.
People with vision problems may be required to wear glasses, contact lenses, or specialized lens such as telescopic lens to be able to drive safely. Individuals with hearing problems may need hearing aids in order to be eligible to drive. In some cases, special car accessories are required to allow individuals with health conditions to drive.
Individuals with medical conditions may have certain license restrictions based on evaluation and recommendation by a health care professional. Possible license restrictions include daylight driving only, limited area driving, no driving in freeway or interstate, no driving during rush hour, driving with a companion in the car, and so on.
Patients who have gone through medical procedures due to their health condition may be prohibited from driving for a certain number of weeks. Attending physicians may determine when an individual is ready to drive again.