Driving with arthritis

I have OA in my right hip and associated knee, ankle and foot pain. This is making driving painful for anything more than a mile or so. Does anyone know of any exercises I could do to overcome this? Or, indeed, any other advice? It is affecting my quality of life as I cannot go out independently.



  • airwave
    airwave Member Posts: 579

    I get pain and a hot feeling down my right leg into my foot, caused by pressure on my spinal cord, I use the cruise control a lot, it’s an automatic car, I would guess that I use it for 85% of my journeys at all speeds, you just have to build up confidence in using it, it is also more economical than me(!). I haven’t had a speeding ticket since I started using it 😎😎.

    I did have a recent car that had ‘varipower steering’ giving increased assistance at parking speeds which you may think they all would do but not so, it was switchable on/ off as well. Certainly I have used a handle fixed to the steering wheel that is a great help, most garages won’t accept responsibility for fitting them.

    its a grin, honest!

  • Mike1
    Mike1 Member Posts: 1,992

    There are several things that may help such as getting an automatic, installing additional mirrors, fitted a knob to your steering wheel and so forth. Your local Council may also be able to help out by advising about adaptations, get in touch with Adult Social Care department. You also have to notify the DVLA of your condition, failure to do so could result in a fine and if involved in an accident as a result you could be prosecuted. Check out https://www.gov.uk/health-conditions-and-driving. I told the DVLA about my conditions because my GP queried whether I should still be driving and after a few months of forms back and forth they withdrew my licence!

  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 29,395

    What about an automatic car (if you are able to change cars of course) one less pedal to use. Mike's ideas are all great especially the mirrors so you need to turn less.

    I also have a car wedge cushion which helps my back/hips etc

    Try hard to keep driving if you can even if you have to drive less.

  • Jane63c
    Jane63c Member Posts: 16

    Thanks folks, my car is an automatic, the wedge cushion sounds a good idea and will,investigate

  • N1gel
    N1gel Member Posts: 160

    There are 'Driving assessment centres' dotted around the UK - usually free if you get referred by your GP or a Therapist.

    If you get a mobility allowance and drive a Motability car I'm sure they can arrange to fit things that help like hand controls, steering handles and extra mirrors at the start of the lease.

    'The hardest part of any journey is the bit before the front door'