Older women drivers: The influence of age, marital status, health, and social support

Geri Adler, Susan Rottunda, Mary Bauer, Michael Kuskowski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

Few studies have examined the characteristics of older women drivers. This study investigated the driving patterns and habits of a group of community-dwelling older women. We were specifically interested in determining if behaviors differed by driver age, health status, residence, marital status, and social support. Analyses revealed that women who drove daily (p < 0.05), took longer trips (p = 0.001) and drove more miles (p = 0.05) were significantly younger. Compared to single women, married women drive more now than five years ago (p = 0.024) and are more likely to be depended on for transportation (p = 0.016). Women with comorbid medical conditions scored lower on health perceptions (p < 0.001), physical functioning (p < 0.001 ), mental health (p = 0.001), and role functioning (p < 0.001), and higher on pain (p < 0.001). Women who live with a non-driver had lower scores on social interaction (p = 0.001), tangible support (p = 0.001), mental health (p = 0.024), and social functioning (p = 0.005) compared to women who live with another licensed driver. Driving late in life has varying effects on older women including the possibility of increased burden due to assuming transportation responsibilities for others.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)39-51
Number of pages13
JournalClinical Gerontologist
Volume29
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2005

Keywords

  • Burden
  • Driving
  • Transportation
  • women

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