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Driving with arthritis - how I went from being unable to drive for 12 months to purchasing an arthritis friendly car.
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Driving with Arthritis

Dear Diary,

My partner (hereby known as the Irish Leprechaun) and I have decided that we need a break. It has been an insane last 6 months. SOooo in our wisdom we have decided to head off on a road trip to Airlie Beach. This sounds all well and good in theory – but it needs a lot of extra preparation, if you also have to deal with joint pain issues. Being sat in a car for more than an hour at a time is difficult at the best of times.

Fortunately I have been preparing!!! 

The First Step

1. Making sure that I was safe to drive

Since suffering my ‘work injury’ I had not been able to drive. I had been unable to drive for a year. Now that I knew the injury was in fact Osteoarthritis, a form of arthritis It was therefore very important that I assessed my ability to drive. 

“Driving is the most hazardous activity we do on a daily basis. It takes our whole body to do it — physically, mentally, visually — so we need to be at our best.”

Patrick Baker an occupational therapist with Cleveland Clinic’s Driver Rehabilitation Program.

The article, below, from my Creaky Me blog is the result of that research.

Click on the article below
More comfort, less joint pain. Drive safely with Arthritis
More comfort, less joint pain. Drive safely with Arthritis

More comfort, less joint pain. Drive safely with Arthritis

Driving is the most hazardous activity we do on a daily basis. We need to drive safely with arthritis

Read More

The Second Step

2. Making sure that I purchased a car that would suit me well into the future

With the best will in the world, I did not have a hope of continuing to drive my existing manual car. I HAD to change to an automatic (oh the tears that were shed…..) The following Creaky Me blog article was the result of my research into Arthritis-Friendly cars

Click on the article below
Arthritis Friendly Car Buying Guide
Arthritis Friendly Car Buying Guide

Arthritis Friendly Car Buying Guide

Future proof yourself with this arthritis friendly car buying guide and checklist. Ensure you can remain mobile and independent for as long as possible.

Read More

The Third Step

3. Making sure that my car was as comfortable as possible

I was not prepared to spend the money required for the perfect arthritis-friendly car. As with all these purchases – a compromise is often needed. I was mainly doing small journeys and city driving. So I had to decide what features I could live without. 

As a result, I looked at how I could “pimp up my ride” with budget conscious adaptations (items that I could buy from everyday places such as Supercheap/Kmart.)

For longer journeys, I am very fortunate to have the Irish Leprechaun to share the journey. He is also known as The Cherub, or as he prefers The Adonis (yep – get those images straight in your head!) I also – always have a ‘Car Care Package‘ with me at all times.

Click on the article below
Customize your car for cheap. 10+ aids for more comfort, less pain.
Customize your car for cheap. 10+ aids for more comfort, less pain.

Customize your car for cheap. 10+ aids for more comfort, less pain.

Customize your car for cheap and make it arthritis-friendly. Give yourself more comfort, less pain.. This article lists cheap aids for your car that will help.

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....and this is what I bought

Its a Kia Picanto - welcome to "Pippa Picanto" to the family

It’s definitely not a Road Trip car! But it is a city driving, cute looking, arthritis-friendly car for ME. Yes, I stress the ME.  Everyone has unique needs and this is what I feel best fits mine.

PROS:

  • Suits my budget
  • Is small and light 
  • Has a reversing camera
  • I can easily open the doors and boot
  • Tiny turning circle
  • Easy parking
  • City-driving
  • Doesn’t look like a granny car (yep I am still hung up about being too young for arthritis!)

 I may be biased but I think it looks kinda cool and sporty too!

CONS:

Maybe not the best long Road Trip kinda car! It is okay – I have that covered with a self-care care kit for my car. Read on….

kia picanto min scaled
What has been your choice for an Arthritis friendly car? Comment below
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