How Can Medication And Health Issues Result In A DUI?

When you are stopped for driving under the influence, it can be a scary experience if you have never been through this situation before. If you have not been drinking or partaking in drug use, you may feel like you have nothing to worry about. However, even taking medications from your medicine cabinet or certain health conditions can result in a DUI charge especially if the charge is based on a field sobriety test. Here is what you need to know:

What Medications Can Result in a DUI?

Medication can cause your body to react in ways that are similar to if you have been drinking or using drugs. Certain side effects can cause you to be drowsy, lose your coordination, have difficulty keeping your balance, or have the inability to concentrate. All of these side effects of medication can cause you to fail a field sobriety test. You may have trouble following the police officer's instructions which can cause you to fail a field sobriety test even if you have not had a sip of alcohol.

Examples of medications that can simulate signs of driving under the influence include cold and flu medication, cough medicine, sleep medication, muscle relaxers, anxiety medication, and medication used to treat ADHD.

What Health Conditions Can Simulate DUI Signs?

Using medication is not the only way to potentially face a failed sobriety test. Certain medical issues can cause you to fail this test. If you have inner ear issues that cause imbalance, you can fail the field sobriety test. If you have hearing loss or impairments, you could not understand the officer's instructions and can look like you cannot comprehend. Any brain injuries can also have an impact. If you are obese, suffer from arthritis, or have vision issues, you could also have trouble passing a field sobriety test.

How Can You Avoid Getting a DUI?

If you are pulled over for a DUI and you are either on legal medication or you have a health issue that you think may have contributed to the appearance of a DUI, there is one solution. You can decline a field sobriety test. Instead, you can ask for a blood alcohol content test. This is the only way to ensure that you can prove you did not have an illegal amount of alcohol in your system. You will likely be taken to the police station for this test, although some may be done in the field. 

For more info, contact a local DUI attorney