What strategies can I use to help someone stop driving, especially if their license has been revoked?

Answer: Many people are reluctant to give up the keys even after it has been ordered by law, but you can help!

Try the following strategies:

  • Write out an agreement about driving like this one. This is most helpful early in the driving cessation process.
  • Acknowledge how difficult it may be for the person
  • Explore alternatives to driving (see below)
  • Show the driver how much money they can save using this worksheet.
  • Be supportive but share your safety concerns
  • Be patient, expect to have several conversations about this issue
  • Agree to disagree. Sometimes when a person has dementia they may not understand how their driving is affected. When accompanied by memory loss, this may result in repeated or circular conversations or arguments. Sometimes arguing about driving is worse than not driving. If this is the case, try some of the strategies below.

If you can’t convince the person with dementia to agree to stop driving more invasive measures to promote driving cessation may include:

  • Hide the keys or file them down
  • Disable the car (e.g. remove the battery)
  • Cancel the vehicle registration and return the license plate
  • Sell the car or park it out of sight
  • Contact the Alzheimers Society of Nova Scotia Alzheimer InfoLine for support
    • 1-800-611-6345 (outside Metro)
    • 902- 422-7961 (local)
    • alzheimer@asns.ca
    • www.alzheimer.ca/ns
    • Provincial office located at 112-2719 Gladstone Street in Halifax