Lately you’ve noticed some fresh dents on the bumpers of your parent’s car. The last time you rode with your dad he ran a red light, and frankly mom’s never been a good driver. Is it time for them to turn over their car keys?

Driving helps afford seniors the freedom and independence to age in place within the comfort of their own home, and that’s a goal that most of us have for our parents. But it’s a fact that elderly drivers are more likely to be involved in traffic accidents than others because of physical and cognitive changes like impaired vision, poor depth perception, and slower reaction times. Certain medications can also interfere with their driving abilities. When your aging parents have both reached a point where it’s simply not safe for them to operate a vehicle any longer, developing an effective strategy to convince them to give up the car keys is never easy. What follows are some tips on how to do so.

Signs that Seniors Need to Stop Driving

Watch for these indications that your mom and dad are having trouble driving:

  • Several recent fender benders, accidents or car scrapes
  • Driving too fast or too slow
  • Difficulty moving their foot from the gas pedal to brake, or confusing the two
  • Being pulled over by the police several times for driving infractions
  • Not staying alert for pedestrians or other vehicles
  • Other family members complain about their driving
  • Running traffic lights or stop signs
  • Getting lost in familiar areas
  • Clipping curbs routinely
  • Loss of self-confidence in their own driving abilities
  • Frequent “close calls” on the road or in parking lots
  • Other drivers honk at them often

When your aging parents begin exhibiting one or more of these signs on a regular basis, it’s time to have