senior care

The 5 Best Technology Trends for Senior Care

Technology is changing the senior care scene. According to Pew Research Center, more than half of seniors are now using the Internet. And 77 percent of seniors now have a cell phone.

Social media and a variety of apps can help your parents maintain good health mentally, emotionally and physically as they age. In this article, we will share five of the best technology trends that can give you and your parents both some extra peace of mind.

1. Wearables

Wearables are not just for the younger generation. Fitness wearables like FitBit can help your parents stay active and feel good about their fitness achievements.

But wearables can also keep your parents safe. New technology and apps for wearables can detect falls, protect people with poor vision from bumping into objects, and keep people with dementia from wandering off (called geo-fencing).

These new technologies also give you peace of mind. If something happens to your parents, you will receive an alert right away.

2. Telehealth for Senior Care

Do your parents sometimes miss doctors’ appointments? Or maybe they don’t have adequate transportation to see their healthcare provider. Enter telehealth.

Now the expertise of a doctor is available from your parents’ living room. Seniors can schedule visits, discuss their symptoms, ask for advice and receive medication prescriptions in the privacy of their home.

Doctors can also send out reminders to take their medications so they don’t forget. Telehealth can reduce the expense of medical care for many. It can also reduce the risk of lapses in medication and care.

3. Luminosity

We know you’re not only concerned with your parents’ physical health. What about their mental acuity?

If your dad is tired of crossword puzzles and Sudoku, check out Luminosity. Luminosity has a lot of games that he can play to not only entertain himself but challenge his intellect at the same time.

There are all kinds of mental challenges you can select. Different games exercise different parts of the brain and build different skills.

You can even keep track of and congratulate him on his progress. When you were growing up, you loved the feeling when you knew he was proud of you.

What would be more rewarding, now that you’re caring for him, than a pat on the back and an “atta-boy, you’re still as sharp as a tack”?

4. Robots

What’s next on the horizon? Robots designed to help aging parents with disabilities.

Let’s say, for example, that your mom suffered a stroke, and now she struggles to feed herself. A robot can help her learn functions of daily living, or it can do them for her.

The robot can perform repetitive motions more consistently than even a home healthcare nurse.

And the nice thing about robots is that you never have to worry about your mom being mistreated during therapy or by a caregiver.

5. Autonomous Cars

It was probably nerve racking for your parents to teach you how to drive. But now the roles are reversed, and your parents want independence even more than you did as a teenager. Should you hand over the keys?

You may feel anxiety over letting your parents drive, but it’s also challenging to drive them around town when they need it.

Coming soon, there may be a better alternative. With advancements in self-driving cars, someday you can let your mom have independence and let you have peace of mind.

We hope that this article has shown you how technology can help your parents during the later decades of their life. For related articles on senior care, feel free to explore my blog.

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Kendall E. Van Blarcom, Psy.M. Licensed Psychotherapist (Retired)

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