Increased age is accompanied by changes in physical, mental and sensory abilities that can alter a person’s ability to safely operate a vehicle. The winter holidays can be a particularly challenging time for elderly family members. December is filled with plans for shopping, family gatherings, holiday programs and religious services, but aging parents or relatives may not feel comfortable driving to these events because of low vision or degenerative eye disease.
Cataracts and Other Eye Diseases Make Driving Tough
Eye conditions like cataracts can make driving difficult, especially at night. Cataracts are a clouding of the lens of the eye and can cause blurred vision, double vision and sensitivity to glare. With fewer hours of daylight during winter months, those who have cataracts may avoid certain activities based on time of day, driving distance or duration of events. This is the perfect opportunity for a friend or family member to step in and offer the gift of transportation.
Other conditions can impair vision and make driving difficult or even impossible too. These include glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy. If you have loved ones with chronic eye conditions or low vision, give them a call to begin making transportation arrangements. While you are at it, offer to drive them to a comprehensive eye exam before the holidays, so they can have the best possible vision during this festive, event-filled season.
A Comprehensive Eye Exam in Sight
You may not realize the worth of the gift of transportation until you need it yourself. Our vision is our most treasured possession, and we often do not realize its value until our own sight is compromised. While encouraging your loved ones to see an eye specialist for a comprehensive eye exam, consider how long it has been since you had an exam yourself. If it has been a year or more since your last checkup, make an appointment. This way, you can be assured that your own vision is in tip-top shape when you pick up your relatives for holiday gatherings.