How Smart Home Tech Can Help Aging Parents Stay at Home Longer
For the vast majority of seniors, maintaining independence while staying at home is extremely important. However, if you are caring for aging parents or other seniors, you may worry about their well-being, especially if you work or live some distance away. If you can’t be around all the time, you may be overwhelmed with concerns for their safety. What if they fall? What if they forget their medication? What if they leave the stove on?
Thankfully, there are many smart gadgets that can help to make it possible for seniors to stay at home, and many of them can be controlled and monitored using your smartphone! They can give caregivers peace of mind by addressing many common safety concerns.
The Tricella Pillbox syncs with your smartphone and contains sensors that can detect when each compartment is opened. You’ll receive notifications that keep you informed if your loved one forgets their medication or takes the wrong pills by accident.
MedMinder is another option for help with medication. It requires a monthly subscription, but it also has the available feature that compartments remain locked until a specified time, lessening the risk of taking medications at the wrong time.
General Safety Concerns
Emergency Alerts. For a monthly fee, companies such as Life Alert, greatcall, Philips Lifeline, Connect America, and MobileHelp will provide your loved one with a wearable device that can be activated in the case of an emergency. Some of them come equipped with fall detection features that can sense a fall even if the emergency button has not been activated. Many are designed to be easy to use on-the-go and come equipped with GPS and phone apps.
Motion Detectors. Motion sensors can serve a variety of purposes. Samsung’s SmartThings Smart Home Hub can be used along with a motion sensor to automatically turn on lights if your loved one is up and around after dark. Motion cookies from Sen.se Mother link to your phone and can be carried or attached to various items. This allows you to keep tabs on anything from when your loved one opens the refrigerator to whether or not they’ve taken their medication.
Video Monitoring. If you’re especially concerned with the risk of your loved one falling in a certain area, like by the front door or while climbing the stairs, you could consider installing an indoor video camera so that you can keep an eye on their safety. Alarm.com offers a camera that links to your smartphone! In order to use the camera, you will also need a paid subscription with video service.
Help With Dementia Care
Memory issues can present a huge challenge for seniors wishing to remain at home for as long as possible. Many of the following aids can be helpful for anyone who may be prone to forgetfulness, but they can make a huge difference for seniors with dementia.
iGuardStove. This device is designed to turn off the stove automatically if it’s left unattended for too long. It will also keep track of the number of auto shut-offs and send you alerts if it shuts off more than 5 times in a 24-hour period.
Wandering prevention. The LOKU Freedom Watch is worn on the wrist like a regular digital watch, but it will send an alert to warn you if the wearer wanders out of an established safe zone. It can be locked onto the wrist so your loved one can’t remove it without your knowledge. It also has a panic button that the wearer can press to alert you in an emergency. The Freedom Watch requires a monthly subscription to take advantage of its services.
Reminder Rosie. This clock can be programmed with up to 25 reminders, so when it’s time to eat lunch, take medication, or feed the cat, you can be sure that your loved one will get the message. Reminders can be recorded in your own voice, and many seniors find it comforting to hear a message from children or grandchildren.
If staying at home is a priority for your aging parents, smart tech options may make it possible. Many of these devices can help to delay or avoid the need to sacrifice independence for the sake of safety.
Visit the Davis Community’s Assisted Living and SNF in Wilmington NC
If you or loved one are no longer capable of living a safe, independent lifestyle, then call the Davis Community today at 910.686.7195 or simply complete and submit our online information request form. We provide exceptional assisted living and skilled nursing services in Wilmington, NC with a strong and supportive environment where your loved one will feel welcomed and part of an active community. Get to know the difference today — schedule a visit to the Davis Community!