Should You Drive with Migraines?
Do you suffer from chronic migraines? Have you ever had a migraine last longer than 10 days in a row? Has it ever prevented you from working or being with your family? If you have ever experienced these things, you know how debilitating a migraine can be.
One question that I get rather frequently is the question about whether or not it is safe to drive with a migraine. The short answer is no. You should not be driving with migraines. This may seem a little strict, but you’ll want to consider why.
The main reason you don’t want to drive when you have a migraine is that migraines slow your reaction time. Period. This is why it makes it unsafe to drive. When you are driving, you have to be alert and ready to react to something at a moment’s notice. Maybe there is a deer in the road. Maybe a driver in front of you slammed on his breaks and you need to slam on your breaks.
I know many stories of people who have driven with migraines and regret it. I had a patient come in who told me about a time she didn’t want to wait for her husband to get home to go to the grocery store. She was having a migraine, but she didn’t know what she could do about it. She didn’t think it was a big deal. So she got in the car and drove to the grocery store. She needed to swerve at one point, and she wasn’t able to stop her car in time or get out of the way, and she ended up hitting another car.
Fortunately, no one died in this accident, but they were injured fairly severely. And the point is that someone could have easily died. My patient says that she regrets that decision and often thinks about it when she is having migraines and wants to drive.
So next time you are thinking about driving with a migraine, the simple thing to do is just don’t drive. You can take an Uber, take a taxi, take public transportation, or wait for someone to give you a ride, but you should not be driving with migraines ever.