Seniors and Technology

Services and Technologies You Can Use to Care for Faraway Elderly Loved Ones Guest contributor Ted James brings us this insight for ageing forward with grace and ease!

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If you have an elderly loved one who lives far away, you want to do all you can to ensure they're happy, healthy, and enjoying their golden years. Luckily, there are many services and technologies that can help the elderly stay connected with the world. This can be especially important for those in the LGBTQ+ population, who may experience isolation without a nearby community. Elder Pride 4 Me helps LGBTQ+ seniors find their community. This guide provides tips and tools that can help seniors from all walks of life thrive in their later years.

Create a smart home that caters to their needs and keeps them secure

According to Caring Senior Service, a smart home connects your loved one's mobile phone to home devices, such as the thermostat, lighting, and sound system. This allows them to control these electronics wherever they are in the house, without having to move. For seniors with mobility problems, this can be a big boon. Smart homes can get even more advanced, connected to doorbells and security monitoring systems. This can be especially valuable if your parent or grandparent lives alone and gets nervous about security.

Get them a senior-friendly tablet to stay connected

Smart home technology is just one of the many tools that can benefit seniors. You also want to make sure your senior loved one is staying connected to the wider world from their home. Elderly individuals who live alone are susceptible to feelings of loneliness and isolation, which can lead to depression and anxiety. Getting your loved one a senior-friendly tablet can open up their socializing options. They can use their tablet for email and video calls, for example, making it easier to stay connected with friends and family from afar.

Use mobile apps to make their everyday life easier

A mobile phone is another essential tool that can help your senior loved one stay connected. Make sure to get them a phone with a big screen that they can view and type on easily. Also, pre-load their phone with all of the apps they may need. For example, if they're on Facebook, get them the Facebook app. If they use Skype for video, show them how to use the Skype app on their phone. Other practical apps for seniors include Pill Monitor, ShopWell, and Medwatcher.

Protect their health with modern cutting-edge technology

Apps like Pill Monitor can help seniors track their meds. This is just one of the many ways that the elderly can use technology to safeguard their well-being. CNBC provides a useful roundup of other tech devices that can help seniors with their physical and mental health. Examples include Intuition Robotics' ElliQ robot, an AI machine that helps with everyday tasks, and the Ageless Innovation robotic companion, which is designed to reduce loneliness. There are even robots that look like dogs, made for dementia patients.

Hire external services to help with daily chores that are getting too much for them

Of course, it takes more than robots and technology to help seniors live their best lives. You may also want to hire external services to help your loved one with daily tasks, such as grocery shopping, meal preparation, home maintenance, and lawn care. For instance, Grandkids LLC is a service solution designed for aging populations, matching them with younger people who help around the house, inside and outside. Talk to your loved one about what chores they find tiresome and see if you can hire someone to help in these areas.

Turn to the internet to help them connect with the wider world

Finally, find ways for your senior loved one to connect with the wider world online. The internet offers many platforms to find friends, old and new. For instance, you can help them locate old friends from their school days using an online classmate finder. These search engines let you tailor your hunt according to details like high school name, city, and graduation date. This makes it easier to find people in the vastness of the internet. Your loved one may enjoy reminiscing about their school days with a long-lost pal.

It can be tough if you have a senior loved one living far away who you can't provide active care for every day. However, the above technologies and services can be arranged from afar and will help your parent or grandparent thrive. You can then rest easy knowing they're enjoying their golden years.

For more resources to help LGBTQ+ seniors stay connected with the world, check out the YouTube channel.

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