Growing old but being able to stay at home is a big wish for most people. 90% of American seniors, to be exact, would prefer to age at home rather than move to a facility or community. There are the practicalities of age and living alone to consider, though, making most people give up on that wish.
However, thanks to new technology and futuristic gadgets, aging in place is a lot easier and much safer. There is a ton of “age in place” tech on the market these days, helping seniors stay at home, giving family members peace of mind, and even saving money, as they’re cheaper than assisted living facilities.
Here are a few of the most common “age in place” technologies that are changing the face of senior living.
Have you ever called your parent 6 different times in one day just to make sure he or she’s ok? If that sounds like you, activity-based sensors may be the solution. These sensors are set up around a house, and are activated by motion. If an elderly resident is doing, or not doing, something, the sensors will alert a family member, caregiver, or emergency response service depending on the settings. For example, if dad hasn’t moved from the bathroom in over an hour, the sensors will detect it and alert pre-determined people.
These sensors cane be discreetly set up around the house, from on doors and windows to under bed sheets, in cabinets and more. There are a few different sensors on the market, but alarm.com’s offers sensors and devices as well as a home security system for about $50 per month.
- Emergency Pendants
Emergency pendants, or fall detectors, are small devices that can be worn around the neck or wrist. They have a small button that, when pressed, alerts emergency response or a re-determined family member or caregiver. Some emergency pendants even have a fall detection feature that engages in case the senior is unable to press the button.
There are tons of emergency pendants out there, each with different benefits. HomeSafe with Auto Alert is waterproof and lightweight, and only costs $44.95 per month with a landline. GoSafe, another option that’s designed to work on the go with GPS, costs $54.95 per month.
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- Medication Dispensers and Reminders
As sad as it is, one of the big dangers seniors face aging in place is forgetting to take their medication, or worse, being unsure if they already took the pills, taking them again. Luckily, there has been a lot of new tech coming out that’s designed to remind seniors to take their medication.
The MedTime Station sets off an alarm with a flashing light when its time to take medication. The device has a rotating tray that moves into position, so the proper pills will be taken. MedTime also has a medicine cup to make it easier for those with dexterity issues, and a lock setting for extra protection. This device can dispense pills up to 6 times a day.
The MedTime PLUS is a similar device, but it can dispense medicine up to 24 times a day. This model also has an LCD screen that shows the date, time, next dose, dose remaining, and battery level.
Any of these “age in place” devices and systems can be a big asset to seniors wishing to stay at home.
If you’ve tried any of these items, or have more questions, feel free to comment below. Explore our other articles for more helpful tips and tricks.