Driving with Diabetes

Do you have diabetes and want to find about how this will affect your driving? Or perhaps you know someone who has diabetes who you think shouldn’t be driving. Watch the following video to learn more about informing the DVLA and all your options…

There’s a whole myriad of different conditions that could impact on whether you can drive or not and that you need to tell the DVLA about.

I thought I’d look at two in particular. And the first of those is diabetes. There’s lots of specifics, so if you’re a diabetic, you do need to check with the DVLA website. Just to look at a couple of things in general, if you’re just on drug treatments and not on insulin then you may not have to inform the DVLA of your diabetes. This is only long as your diabetes is well controlled and you’ve had less than one episode of hypoglycemia or of a low blood sugar within the past year and you don’t have any complications affecting your eyesight or peripheral vascular disease.

So, to summerise, if you don’t have any other ongoing health issues and you’re well controlled, then you don’t have to inform the DVLA. If you’re an insulin-dependent diabetic, if you need to take insulin, then the DVLA need to know. There’s also a whole long list of specifics about control of your disease that they need to know about and you need to think about.

For example, in the first month of using insulin, you shouldn’t drive.
This is because when first start getting used to insulin and finding the right dose for you there is a risk that your blood sugar may drop lower than is ideal, certainly lower than 4. This means you really shouldn’t be driving because there’s a risk that you’ll lose control of the car. So, don’t drive in the first month.

You need to inform your insurance company that you’re on insulin as well, because it may have implications with them. One very important point is that you need to check your blood sugar regularly. All diabetics do anyway, but you need to know before you step into a car, every single time you go out to drive.

You need to have some sort of record of what your blood sugar is and if it’s less than 4 then you shouldn’t be driving at that particular time. This is because you could find that, if you had an accident and you were unable to provide evidence of your blood sugar from the time before you got in a car, the insurance company won’t validate your insurance. So, you have to have proof that when you step into the car that your blood sugar is good enough for you to be driving. You need to consider all the specific complications, particularly once you’re on insulin with diabetes and you need to have evidence that your diabetes is well controlled.

So, lots of things to think about; be diligent with checking your blood sugars. Make sure everybody’s up to date, and it doesn’t mean you can’t drive just because you’re diabetic. You just need to be on top of the situation, gather all your information, and be well-controlled.