Fitbit-Force device

5 Technologies That Are Improving the Lives of the Elderly

HEALTH

Everyday tasks become more difficult and tiresome as you begin to age and personal independence becomes a distant memory. It can become a huge responsibility for somebody to look after you, whether that be a healthcare professional, a family member or friend, as they juggle to tackle everyday activities and their own responsibilities. Technology has advanced to the point where machines, devices and robots can offer assistance, to the point where the elderly are able to regain a level of their independence. Here are five of the best technologies that are improving the lives of the elderly…

Paro:

Paro is a robotic seal that was created in Japan, as therapeutic companion for the elderly. Paro has all of the sensory motions to imitate a live pet, without having the added stress of maintenance and care. It’s believed that animals, such as dogs, can offer a level of comfort and ease in stressful situations. This animal assisted therapy involves animals as a form of treatment. Paro encourages cognitive stimulation and offers companionship, which is perfect for the elderly who suffer from dementia or depression. This technology has advanced to the point where it can learn how to behave based on user preference.

The GrandCare System:

The GrandCare system is a fully-featured, residential home system that supports the user in everyday life. This system provides the individual with the social communications, instructions, medication prompts and ability to communicate with friends and loved ones at the click of a button. This device is completely user friendly and doesn’t require computer skills – some devices can be quite intimidating and difficult to navigate, which can be off-putting to the user. The GrandCare system features a care portal, where caregivers, friends and family can access important information about their loved ones i.e. any unusual behaviour i.e. sensors can monitor the movement of the user and will send out alerts if there are any sudden movements/ lack of movements.

The FitBit:

This device isn’t exclusively for the elderly, but it encourages them to lead a healthier lifestyle. The FitBit is essentially a wearable personal trainer device that allows you to monitor important things like your heartrate, your sleep patterns and the steps you take on a daily basis. As you get older, it’s important to remain active so that you don’t lose mobility. Increasing awareness of your activity can massively improve mobility and make you more aware of your everyday actions. If you are given the tools and reminders to improve your lifestyle then nothing should stop you!

The TabSafe:

This technology reminds, dispenses, alerts and posts information on when to take medication, how much medication is left in the device and other health information, which is accessible from Smartphones, Laptops, Computed and Tablets. Support workers and family members usually take on the role of ensuring that the elderly are taking their medication in the correct doses at the correct times, but this device allows the user to regain some independence and take control of their own medication consumption.

Television Ears:

Television ears are a useful technology which assists people who struggle to hear the TV without having the volume turned up to 100. The device is designed to fit underneath the user’s chin comfortably, where the user can use then control the volume to suit their preference. This technology allows the user to join in with everyday TV time, rather than feeling isolated or unable to fully enjoy the experience. It can be a great way to bring the family back together.

Alice Porter is a blog writer for GrandCare and is passionate about raising awareness for healthcare for the elderly and improving the quality of life for those over 65

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