You started taking a new medication recently, one that you have yet to get used to. You also had a run-in with Virginia law enforcement recently, an encounter that led to a DWI, only you did not have any alcohol in your system. Could your medication be to blame?

The FDA explains how some medication impairs your ability to drive, which can make you behave like a drunk driver. Learn the true cause of your charge and what to do about it.

Medications that impact driving

Several medications come with such side effects as drowsiness, hyperactivity, blurred vision and inattentiveness, all of which can muddle your driving abilities to where you seem intoxicated. Medications with these side effects include opioid pain relievers, muscle relaxants, antidepressants, sleeping pills and diet pills. It is not unusual for the effects of some of these medications to stretch into the next day.

Maybe instead of prescription medication, you take products that contain cannabidiol. No matter your reason for taking CBD products, common side effects of the substance include lethargy, sedation and sleepiness.

How to act against your charge

To fight against your DWI charge, talk to your physician or pharmacist about what happened. You may need to adjust your dosage or switch to a different medication. Taking your dose at a different time could better ensure you do not feel its effects at the time when you usually drive. You can also look over the product packaging, pharmacy handout or online product site for a list of side effects.

A single DWI can have extensive and long-term negative effects. Do not let your attempt to improve your health lead to an unjustifiably damaged reputation.