Our parents and other aging loved ones are living in a time when technology can be a huge asset — or a baffling adversary. Terms like “social media” and “app” and “texting” may have little or no meaning to an aunt who remembers listening in on a telephone party line. Today, she hears a beeping sound in her home, and has no idea whether it is a smoke alarm, a cell phone, an oven timer or the clothes dryer.
What holds older adults back? A recent study by the Pew Research Center identified several important hurdles.
The first and most obvious is physical challenges. Popular devices like smart phones are challenges to arthritic fingers and deteriorating eyesight. Some folks do not believe they are “missing out” on anything, and cite traditional media as sources of the same (or better) information or entertainment. For others, difficulty in learning how to use technology holds them back.
That’s where you can be of help. Recruit a savvy young person to become the older adult’s mentor; it’ll strengthen the ties between generations and boost confidence for both. And, check your local senior center. Chances are good they have classes in the basics that will help move your loved one into the present — and perhaps generate new friends and interests.
Here at Simpson Meadows, we pride ourselves on using emerging technologies to enhance daily life for older adults. Please give us a call; we’d love to help with any concerns you may have, including the need for our superb Memory Care programs. Call 484-364-3125 or visit www.simpsonmeadows.org today.
How technology can save lives and simplify daily life.
You may think of yourself as one of those savvy young persons. But did you know about these senior living innovations?
1. Wearable GPS. Worn like a wristwatch, these lightweight devices all but eliminate the danger of a loved one wandering off and becoming lost.
2. Automatic stove shut-off device. Anyone can become distracted and forget what’s happening in the kitchen; this helps avoid tragic outcomes.
3. Automated medication management devices, with alerts if pills are not used, enable caregivers to monitor safe medication use whether near or far.