Over-the-counter and prescription medication can both be traced as excessive causes of auto and truck accidents. These types of ‘legal’ drugs can impair your reaction time, judgment and ability to drive safely. Medications often mirror the effects of alcohol, which leads to disorientation, unfocused thinking, and even a sense of numbness.
Unfortunately, while people are very aware of the hazards and consequences of driving while intoxicated they are often equally unaware that driving under the negative influences of prescription and over-the-counter medication is life-threatening (to everyone on the road, including the drugged driver) and potentially illegal.
According to research the number of accidents that can be traced to OTC and prescription ‘meds’ is increasing annually. The reason offered is that these medications are readily and easily available and themselves are increasing in use because of the aging population and the ‘miracles of modern medicine’.
The best advice is for anyone taking any form of medication to speak with their doctor and/or pharmacist before ingesting the prescribed amount and then attempting to drive. Physicians and pharmacists should be able to provide a full list of the side effects one may encounter when taking the medicine.
In some cases, the patient may be advised that the medication will impair one’s ability to drive and that he or she should simply not get behind the wheel of a vehicle while on the medication. Car wrecks are easy to get into right now with out help from over the counter drugs.
Finally, if you are simply running into the drugstore to grab a bottle of ‘cough syrup’ (or something similar) do not overlook the need to read the instructions carefully – to be sure you are educated on all possible side-effects.
Greg Baumgartner is an injury lawyer in Houston Tx and also the founder of the Baumgartner Law Firm which is located at 6711 FM 1960 West, Houston, Tx 77069, 281-587-1111.