As we continue with our series of daily posts here for World Alzheimer’s Month 2016 Dementia Awareness Month 2016 #DAM2016 #WAM2016, the issue of Driving and Dementia remains a difficult one for everyone! Those of us with dementia want to keep driving; often those who love us or are in the car with us want us to stop driving as to them, we have become unsafe!
As people with dementia discuss this topic globally, it is clear each country has its own rules and regulations around driving and dementia, and it is a confusing issue. Doctors also dislike bringing this topic up, as it can mean a patient will stop seeing them about their other health issues; governments cannot afford to provide us with alternative and affordable transport, so many of them almost ignore the issue as well.
Member of DAI, and pioneer advocate from Scotland, Dr James McKillop., DUni. MBE, recently produced this booklet with the support of the Life Changes Trust in the UK to support others with dementia facing the loss of a drivers license, and has granted us permission to share it here. Thank you James.
By Dr James McKillop MBE
This is an excerpt from his book:
“No longer allowed to drive
It is a bitter blow losing your licence and you have no idea just how crippling it is, until it happens to you. Your mobility is turned upside down. Your freedom to get up and go at a moment’s notice is gone. You lose your independence. You may have to rely on others to get about.
You feel a nuisance if you ask and are reluctant to bother busy people. You may feel infantilised, taken about like a toddler. Some places are off bus routes and the beaten track and you can no longer travel there, unless someone has the time to take you. It can be humiliating and demoralising.”
Copyright: James McKillop
You may also be interested in this article published in the Australian Journal of Dementia Care by one of DAI’s co-founders, Dementia and the impact of not driving_AJDC_KateSwaffer
DAI also hosted a webinar on Driving and Dementia earlier this year, where Associate Professor Vicki Traynor, an academic from the University of Wollongong shared a Driving self assessment tool with us, which you can view below or download her slides here.
Driving and Dementia, by Associate Professor Victoria Traynor