Are medicated drivers putting you at risk of accident and injury?
What is medicated driving?

 When you have a cold, you take an over-the-counter cold and flu medication to ease your symptoms. When your spring allergies act up, you grab an antihistamine so you can keep up with your daily life.  The problem is that many common over-the-counter and prescription drugs have side-effects that can impair driving ability and put you at risk for a Kansas City drugged-driving car crash.  When drugs are mixed, the potential for dangerous side-effects increases.
According to the FDA, use of the following medications may impair driving:
  •  Anxiety medications
  • Antidepressants
  • Medications containing codeine
  • Cold remedies - prescription and over-the-counter
  • Allergy medications - prescription and over-the-counter
  • Flu medication - prescription and over-the-counter
  • Cough medicine - prescription and over-the-counter
  • Tranquilizers
  • Sedatives
  • Sleeping pills
  • Prescription pain relievers
  • Diet pills
  • Energy pills
  • Benzodiazepines
  • ACE-inhibitors
  • Beta blockers
  • Blood pressure medicines
If you are taking any of these medications, check with your pharmacist before getting behind the wheel.
How serious of a problem is Missouri medicated driving? 
In 2009, the AAA Foundation for Traffic safety surveyed drivers age 55 and older to determine how much they knew about the side-effects of medication and the impact of over-the-counter and prescription medication on driving. Seventy percent of those surveyed who were still driving were using at least one regular prescription medication that had the potential to impair driving. Ten percent of the elderly drivers reported using five or more medications that could impair driving ability. 
However, seventy-two percent of those surveyed did not know that medication can affect one's ability to drive and 18 percent of those taking these medications had been warned that the drugs they were taking could affect their performance behind the wheel. There was no warning on the medication bottle that use of the prescription drug could lead to a possible Missouri car accident.
If your medication causes any of the following side-effects, you may need to reconsider driving:
  • Fatigue or drowsiness
  • Blurred vision
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Reduced reaction time
  • Light-headedness or fainting
  • Difficulty focusing on a task

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James Roswold
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James Roswold is a Kansas & Missouri personal injury, workers comp, and medical malpractice attorney.