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My name is Steve Young and I am a retired California Highway Patrol Officer. I will also be your instructor in one of the online traffic courses with B Line Traffic Schools. No matter what course you sign up for, my goals are the same: Present you with the information that you need in a way that will not put you to sleep and then get you back to your life.  Throughout some of the courses I have included interesting situations, people and other random things I have come across in my 25+ years with the CHP to break things up a bit. Ok ok, enough about me. Close this window and start your course with B Line Traffic Schools today.

Taking Medication and Driving

18 May Blog | Comments

As a whole our country is very busy. As we learn more things move faster. We truly do not like to be slowed down by anything be it: getting sick, getting into car accident, etc… Many people who have gotten into accidents will drive with a cast on their foot. Other people who are sick and taking medications that they have not taken before will also drive.

People will take on necessary risks because they don’t have time or feel they don’t have time to stop and heal. What many people do not know is that the medication that they are taking can affect their driving drastically. Depending on the type of medication you are taking you could get drowsy, slightly disoriented, your balance could be out of whack, or many other possible side effects.

It is extremely important to read the warning labels on any medication that you are given. Or should you buy an over-the-counter medication it is very important to read the possible side effects. These are on the box or in the pamphlet because other people have experienced those types of side effects. Those warnings are to let you know that you too could be affected by the medication you are taking.

When taking a new medication it is highly recommended to either take the medication in the evening when you will not be driving or to have someone drive you the first day you are taking a new medication.

It is also extremely important to let the pharmacist know what other medications you are taking because certain medications can react differently. How one medication affects you might affect someone else differently because of the other medications you’re on. So even if your best friend tells you that the medicine they took, which is the same when you’ve been given, didn’t do anything to them does not mean it won’t do anything to you.

As the old saying goes, “Better to be safe than sorry” is very true of any new medication you are taking that has warning labels or side effects that could impair your driving. You will always be better off being cautious and not getting behind the wheel if your medicine states that you could get drowsy or be off balance a little.

Also be very aware if your new medication has a warning label about drinking alcohol while taking that medication. While normally you might be able to have a drink or two and feel fine some medications can increase the effects of the alcohol in your body. This can also affect your blood alcohol level content should you get pulled over and have to do a breathalyzer.

You either need to avoid alcohol completely while taking a medicine that can be affected by alcohol, or you should have someone driving you just in case. Having a designated driver anytime you are drinking is always a good idea, but especially a good idea if you’re taking medicine that can affect your driving abilities.


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