If you have just been in the hospital for surgery, you are probably desperate to get back to full fitness so you can get back to your old routines once more.
Being out of action can soon get frustrating, and there is always the temptation to do things you are not yet ready for. One of them might be driving. Consider these three things before you grab your car keys after injury:
Are you still insured to drive?
If you are in any doubt, check with your insurance company. If you were to get injured in a crash or were to injure someone else in one, the last thing you need is to have your insurer say your surgery made you unfit to drive. They might try to deny paying out if your doctor told you not to drive for a certain time.
Are you taking any drugs that could affect your driving?
Doctors often give strong painkillers to dull the pain that surgery causes, as well as the pain of the original injury. Some of these can make you drowsy, thereby making it dangerous to drive.
Are you emotionally and physically capable of driving?
Let’s say the surgery was on a broken leg that occurred when a driver knocked you off your bicycle. You may well be feeling anxious when you set out on the road again. Having a panic attack in the middle of the freeway could be catastrophic.
You also need to look at your bodily strength and flexibility. You may not be able to turn the steering wheel through its full range if you just came out of shoulder surgery. Or, you might be too weak to brake firmly if you had a hip operation.
Not everyone will be as cautious as you after surgery. If you discover a driver that collides with you has only just come out of the hospital, seek legal help to see if you can show they were still affected by their surgery.