One of the hardest things about our loved ones needing more care is when we have to be away from them. We worry. Are they eating? Are they taking their meds? Are they OK?
Thanks to technology, it’s easier than ever to stay in touch. And, even better, there are now tech tools for seniors for almost any need you can imagine. Yeah, there’s an app for that!
We at Classy Pal support your efforts to help your loved one stay independent and enjoying life to the fullest. We've scoured the tech world to bring you some of our favorite tech tools to help make your loved one's days a bit easier and your mind more at ease.
If your loved one is older, chances are that the internet and tech were not things they grew up with. The learning curve might be a little steep. With a little guidance and practice, they can be texting and video chatting in no time.
Phones these days are so much more than just a tool to make a call. We now use phones as part of how we manage our day, how we connect with others and even how we track our health. To do all this it takes a smart phone.
Smart phones are more than a luxury these days. They are pretty much a necessity if your loved one is going to be using apps and such. Those old school flip phones can’t handle that kind of tech. Now, if they’re just going to use a phone to make calls, a flip phone is just fine. However, if you want your loved one to have maximum access to all of the tech tools out there, a smart phone is a must.
The brand you choose is up to you. There are many to choose from. Ideally, you want one that is user-friendly and is a good fit for your loved one. Phone size, screen size, accessibility features all matter when you’re choosing for someone who may have sight or dexterity issues.
If the plan is to be able to video chat with your loved one in real time, you want to look at video chat apps. There are lots of apps out there. A few of the more popular ones are:
- FaceTime (iPhone users only)
- Facebook Messenger
These apps are free to use and are easy to access.
Health & Wellness Apps
For almost everything we do, it seems there’s an app to make it just a little easier. Daily living activities are no different.
Your loved one might need help remembering to take their medicine or remember a doctor’s appointment. There are apps for that! Here are just a few to think about:
Be My Eyes – this is a free app for iPhones. This app makes reading a little easier by illuminating things like books and even restaurant menus. Even better, it also magnifies the text which makes reading so much easier on the eyes.
Pillboxie – designed for the iPhone, this app lets users make a customized pillbox and set reminders to take meds at their scheduled times.
Pill Reminder and Medication Tracker – designed for Android phones, this app allows users to create a medication list and schedule with reminders for taking meds.
Well Being Plus – This app allows the user to keep track of appointments of all kinds. You can also set reminders.
Medical Apps & Gadgets
When you can’t be with your loved one, you want to know they’re as safe as they can be. There are a number of apps that can help keep track of medical issues and signal for help should your loved one experience a crisis. Here are a few to consider:
Red Panic Button – This app is available for both iPhone and Android users. This app provides the user with a way to automatically send a text message and email alert with GPS coordinates to a pre-selected list of medical contacts.
Medical Alert Wearable Tech – These services allow the user to use wearable technology to call for medical help. They require a monitoring fee but may be ideal for loved ones who live alone. There are many excellent medical monitoring services on the market so you can choose the right one for your loved one. Some of the more popular brands include:
Good RX – This is a free service that helps the user find the best prices for medications.
Staying connected and engaged with their social circle and the larger world is a vital part of wellness. It isn’t always easy to do especially as mobility declines. Apps are a great way to stay up on what’s happening in the world, stay connected with friends and even find some entertainment online. Here are just a few of the many, many apps to consider:
AARP – The AARP app is free to use. One of the great features is its calendar of local events so that your loved one can find local activities and community events to attend.
Lumosity – This app features brain games designed to enhance cognitive functioning including memory, processing speed, attention, flexibility, and problem solving. And it’s just fun!
Find My Phone or Find My iPad – These are just those practical apps that we all need. Who hasn’t laid their phone down somewhere and stressed over finding it? These apps help to take the worry away. When activated, they can show the user just where their device is.
When it comes to your loved one, you want the best for them. You want them to be safe and to be connected with their friends, family and community too. With all of the technology today, you’re bound to find just the right tool to help your loved one live as independently as possible.