Warning Signs of Driving Problems: Quick List

One or more of these warning signs indicate that an older adult is having potential driving problems -- and they may signal that, at the very least, you'll need to closely monitor her driving:

  • New nicks and scrapes on the car
  • Increased car insurance rates and/or traffic tickets
  • Reluctance to get behind the wheel, or tension or exhaustion after driving
  • Neglecting to fasten seat belt
  • Discomfort at the wheel, craning forward, or showing other signs of discomfort
  • Seeming tense and preoccupied or easily distracted
  • Seeming to be unaware of traffic lights, road signs, pedestrians, or the reactions of other motorists
  • Tailgating or drifting toward the oncoming lane or into other lanes.
  • Reacting slowly or with confusion in unexpected situations
  • Frequent signs of irritation from other drivers, such as honking
  • Showing signs of disorganization and/or disorientation in other areas of life; for example, leaving the stove on, losing important documents, forgetting key dates

Connie Matthiessen

Constance (Connie) Matthiessen, senior editor, has worked as a healthcare and environmental journalist at the Center for Investigative Reporting and has written for WebMD, Consumer Health Interactive, the Washington Post, the San Francisco Chronicle, BabyCenter. See full bio