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You can't buy good health but you can buy good health information. Check out these newly released Special Health Reports from Harvard Medical School:

Addressing health issues now can help older Americans stay on the road longer, from the September 2013 Harvard Health Letter

Most senior citizens dread the day they'll be told it's time to give up their car keys. But aging brings physical changes that jeopardize safety on the road, reports the September 2013 Harvard Health Letter. "Most people I see don't think they have any driving problems," says Barbara Moscowitz, a geriatric social worker at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital. "Even subtle changes in your health can affect your reaction time. You need to address them while you're well, so you can keep driving."

There are several steps seniors can take early to keep driving. Chief among them are hearing and vision tests, keeping noise inside the car to a minimum, and cutting back on night driving. Exercising and stretching can help maintain the flexibility and strength needed to operate a car. Because mental sharpness slows, Moscowitz recommends avoiding driving during busy times of day, such as rush hour, and finding different routes to avoid high traffic areas. Another important consideration for seniors is medication, which may cause side effects behind the wheel such as confusion, dizziness, and drowsiness. That's why seniors should ask a physician to evaluate all of their drugs and supplements for potential impacts on their driving skills.

Read the full-length article: "Stay driving to stay independent"

Also in this issue of the Harvard Health Letter

  • Stay driving to stay independent
  • Ask the doctor: Should you keep that yearly check-up?
  • Ask the doctor: The concrete risks of secondhand smoke.
  • Are you short of breath?
  • Fall vaccination roundup
  • The importance of stretching
  • Improve sleep by eating right
  • Meat lover's guide to healthy eating
  • The magic of mindfulness
  • What you should know about: Generic vs. brand-name statins
  • News briefs: Don't ignore stroke-like symptoms
  • News briefs: Older people experience eating disorders, too
  • News briefs: Low blood sugar and dementia: Avoiding the downward spiral

More Harvard Health News »


About Harvard Health Publications

Harvard Health Publications publishes four monthly newsletters--Harvard Health Letter, Harvard Women's Health Watch, Harvard Men's Health Watch, and Harvard Heart Letter--as well as more than 50 special health reports and books drawing on the expertise of the 8,000 faculty physicians at Harvard Medical School and its world-famous affiliated hospitals.