A new program through Mesa-based senior care providers, Home Instead Senior Care, will focus on helping elderly parents and their children navigate a tough transition: handing over the car keys for good.
The loss of independence for the elderly can be particularly difficult, but a new initiative, dubbed “Let’s Talk About Driving,” aims to bring seniors and their children together to communicate openly about the dangers of senior driving. The program also provides tips on how to broach a tricky subject. Driving represents more than just a mode of transportation. It can often signify connection to the outside world, and can mean seniors have to face their own mortality — or at the very least, the knowledge that they can no longer do the things they once enjoyed.
“The idea of giving up driving completely sparks a range of emotions in senior drivers — everything from anger, to anxiety and loneliness,” said Home Instead Senior Care owner Mahnaz Pourian.
Luckily, the new program helps families facilitate the conversation, and acknowledges how important maintaining independence is for senior citizens.
In fact, the use of in home care actually helps seniors stay active and independent, compared to the care given in many institutions. It’s generally a less expensive and less extreme alternative to nursing homes, and its popularity is on the rise. Nearly 79% of those who need long-term care choose in home care or community living, rather than institutions.
Even those who can no longer drive can still enjoy many activities they love, and most in home care providers want to foster independence and keep seniors active for as long as feasibly possible.