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Both parents have Alzheimer’s...

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Farm J makes an excellent point about muscle memory in driving. That was my dad. He could handle a car like a 20 yr old but couldn’t remember where he was going half the time.

And it gets tough. Dad went into assisted living, his dementia is quickly moving forward, very confused etc, but at about day 3 he got aggressive with staff about his car. Hitting people. Off he went for physc exam, put on Ativan and he’s a bit calmer now, starting to settle in.

They may sound bad to some, oh, how could you drug up the poor old guy, but lemme tell ya, I’d much rather have Dad on happy pills as have him driving his car through the drug store.
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Speaking from my viewpoint, having a parent that drove a truck into the local bank, and could have potentially killed one of the loan officers who thankfully was not sitting at her desk.....NOW is the time. Do not wait!
Just this last month an elderly man was driving the wrong way on the interstate and killed a young couple.
If you cant get the keys, disable the vehicle.....
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Depends on many things. Car scratched up? Getting lost? Tough stuff. I just took my dads car 3 weeks ago and moved him to assisted living. He’ll be looking for his car every day until his dementia worsens.
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Would you ride in the car with them driving? Would you let them drive your children? Getting lost? Scratches and dents? Missing or damaged side mirrors? Many Alz/dementia patients will retain the muscle memory to PHYSICALLY drive a car long after they lose the capacity to MENTALLY drive a car. How's their executive functioning? Can they make a plan and follow thru, for example ... If they see a red light, can they INSTANTLY process what that means AND what they need to do about it AND do it? You need to know that they will NOT self report these problems. They will hide it or simply not recognize or remember incidents. Please don't wait!! If they are doing things that make you wonder if they are still safe on the road, THEY ARE NOT.
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When they are forgetting where they parked or where they are going getting lost. Be prepared for an ongoing battle to get the keys back. Have their Dr. write no driving on a prescription pad. My FIL is constantly making excuses why he needs his keys and will tell us Dr said he could drive again he's cured. Lol it's been a real challenge but a necessary one.
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If you are asking the question, then the answer is "NOW."
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There's a 'driving school' associated with the hospital in our town for stroke victims or anyone else who's suffered debilitating illness and is trying to get back to normal life. They assess the patient's ability to handle a car skillfully and safely. It takes the decision making and all ramifications off the family. It might be worth looking into to see if something similar exists in your area. This is a tough thing to do. Good luck!
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We we're driving in traffic earlier today traffic was backed up merging etc. We both looked at each other and said how would fil handle this, or could he react fast enough to avoid a accident. The answers to both were he absolutely would not be able too do either.
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My dad knew when it was time to give up driving after he twice damaged the front right tire as he was hugging the curb while on the road.... this was a visual issue with Dad. But what was going on in the household was my Mom [90+], who was in denial that my Dad [85+] didn't want to risk driving. She still saw Dad as being a young 30 year old who could do anything.

It is extremely difficult for an elder to give up the car keys. Right away their independence is gone, never to return, until driverless cars become the norm. It would be like taking the keys away from a teenager... oh my gosh, life isn't worth living anymore.

When we take away something from an elder we need to have a replacement in mind. Either one of the grown children takes over the driving, or set up a taxi where the same driver could come out [if your parent doesn't mind riding with a stranger]. I was the "designated driver" but I started to get major panic attacks driving my parents because I hated their car with a passion. When I told my parents about my panic attacks their first remark was "what will we do?". Taxis were out of the question, so was the senior bus service. The guilt was overwhelming so I continued to white knuckle driving.
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