DUI on Prescription Medication
How Prescription Drugs can Impair Your Driving –
Did you know that you could be charged with DUI even if you have not had any alcohol? This is due to the fact that the law actually leaves room for impairment to come from many different sources, including legal substances like prescription drugs.
Prescription drugs have many different effects, so we cannot list every single one that might impact your ability to drive. However, there are a few categories of effects that you should be aware of before getting behind the wheel.
Prescription Drugs with Sedative Effects
This category includes drugs that help with sleep such as Ambien as well as strong muscle relaxers such as Robaxin. These drugs can have a dramatic impact on your ability to react to situations, which can be a danger while on the road.
In addition to major prescription drugs, some treatments for comparatively minor conditions can still cause drowsiness. Allergy medicine like Benadryl, for example, can make you more likely to drift off. The effects of drowsiness and tiredness on driving are often underestimated; and, especially when tiredness is medically induced, it is possible that you could be subject to a driving while ability impaired charge.
Prescription Drugs with Stimulant Effects
Although stimulants have the opposite effect of sedatives, they can still be problematic for drivers. For example, one of the common side effects for these types of drugs is mood change; a sudden mood change could make you a more aggressive driver or more irritable than you normally would be.
Some of these drugs may also cause other distractions like nausea or headaches. While these may seem less severe than drinking, they may play a role in your case if you get into an accident while taking them.
Tips for Avoiding Driving While Ability Impaired
There is no universal rule for avoiding ability DUI charges, but there are some steps you can take to minimize the chances that you end up in such a situation:
- Avoid driving after taking any new prescription drug so you can monitor its effects on yourself safely. No one reacts to drugs the same way, and you might have abnormally severe effects.
- Read the entire list of side effects and pay special attention to factors like drowsiness, dizziness, or blurred vision. These can have a directly negative impact on your ability to drive.
- Avoid long driving trips until you have been on a new drug for a few weeks and are sure there are no side effects that could make it dangerous to drive.
- Ask a doctor if it is safe to drive with a prescription drug you are taking.
It is also important to remember that your response to drugs can change over time, so you may need to adjust your habits accordingly. If you have any questions about the laws related to driving under the influence in New York, contact the Long Island DUI attorneys at 888-DUI-Lawyer for an immediate, free, no-obligation consultation.