Medications and Driving
Usually when people think of impaired driving, they think of driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or illicit drugs. Impairment can also be caused by medications such as prescription (Rx) and over-the-counter (OTC) drugs used to treat pain, cold symptoms, and allergies. Some medications, when taken alone or in combination, can have the same impairing effects as alcohol or illicit drugs. Similarly, the penalty for driving under the influence of medication carries the same penalty as a DUI in some states.
While most medications do not interfere with the ability to drive safely, potential side effects that can directly impair motorist’s driving ability include:
- Blurred Vision
- Chest Pain
- Muscle Cramps
Driving is a complex task, but motorists can drive safely and take their medication.
Roadwise Rx is a free, informative and innovative tool developed by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety that motorist can use to see how their medication can affect safe driving. Roadwise Rx highlights the potential driving effects of your medications, in addition to showing users the potential interactions their medications may have with other medications or with common foods.
Follow 3 Simple Steps
In addition, you can print out and keep a copy of your medication list in your purse or wallet, so it’s available in the event of an emergency. Having a detailed, easily accessible list of medications and dosages can be a lifesaving measure.
Bring your medication listing and your Roadwise Rx results to your doctor, who can help you optimize your medication dosage and timing to maximize your ability to drive safely.
Learn more about the potentially impairing side effects of medication, understanding medicine labels, and how you can stay safe on the road below.
Common Prescription Medications
- Pain Medication
- Muscle Relaxants
- Anti-inflammatory Medication
Common Over-the-Counter Medications
- Cold and Flu Medication
- Appetite Suppressants
- Sleep Aids
- Fever Reducers
- Allergy Relief