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Connecting Seniors to Technology

Enrique is a college student participating in the study-abroad program at his school. He is completing a semester at his university’s sister school in Paris. While he is enjoying his international experience, he misses his family back home, especially his grandparents. He wants to video chat with them, but knows they are not as technologically savvy as he.

 

Senior Care in Blaine MN: Seniors and Technology

Senior Care in Blaine MN: Seniors and Technology

 

For now, he will send them a postcard, but hopes to somehow connect with them visually before he leaves France so he can show them Paris in real-time. Enrique’s grandparents are like many across the country; their knowledge of current technologies is lacking, which means sometimes they miss out on their family’s exploits.

 

We are living in a digital age where information is literally at your fingertips.

Emails have overtaken letter writing as the preferred mode of communication; text messaging may soon replace emails. Smart phones house processors more powerful than desktop computers and better imaging than some of the better high-powered cameras. The public is receiving more news through social media outlets than through traditional outlets such as network television or newspapers.

For many seniors these new technologies are unfamiliar and intimidating. Many elders over the age of 65 still do not have an email address. Since technology is guiding how people communicate with one another, senior citizens run the risk of isolation unless they can learn to use modern devices. Senior care services can provide access to seniors to learn how to use technology and remain connected with their families and the world.

 

Learning new tricks

The adage “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks” does not hold up in this generation of seniors. While seniors do use technology, such as computers, smart phones, etc. at lower rates than general public, they are growing more connected. In 2017, four in ten seniors owned a smart phone, which is double their ownership rate in 2013. Half of surveyed seniors owned broadband service allowing them access to the Internet. Although they may not be as familiar with all the technological tools available to them to stay connected, seniors are finding ways to use current trends in technology and communication to suit their needs.

 

Helping your senior with technology

Not all seniors are able to understand the ins and outs of all the current technology; senior care professionals can help elders connect to and find ways to use technology for their convenience. Senior care professionals can:

 

-Help the senior decide why (s)he needs a device: Technology can be used in many ways, so determining how its use will help determine the type of device needed. A device that is good for tying letter may be different than one used for watching videos of family.

 

-Help purchase the right device: Senior care professionals can help a senior decide where to use the device. Does the senior want to be mobile, or is at home use a priority? This will determine whether a smart phone, tablet or desktop are optimal purchases.

 

-Connecting to family and friends: Senior care professionals can set-up programs and applications (apps) to allow seniors contact with family and friends. This can range from registering for an email address, setting up a social media account, or using the devices camera functions.

 

-Find apps to help with convenience: There are numerous apps that help with everyday activities such as banking, delivery services, bill paying, etc. Registering for these and learning how to use them can place a senior’s everyday needs at their fingertips.

 

-Finding apps to help with health: Exercise, medication management, and other health related apps can provide reminders to seniors to manage their healthcare needs.

 

If you or someone you know needs Senior Care in Blaine, MN, contact Adara Home Health Care. We provide quality and affordable home care services for many fragile or senior members in the communities we serve. Call us at (888) 660-5772 for more information.

 

Sources

AARP 

Pew Research Center

Lori Seemann

Lori Seemann has a background in nurse management, hands-on critical care and business management. Her clinical expertise and knowledge of information systems had been instrumental in ensuring operational consistency in all branch offices. She led efforts that resulted in implementation of a new home care computer system that is utilized for staffing, scheduling, clinical records and billing. Lori continues to seek opportunities to improve caregiver productivity through nurse utilization of a unique point of care laptop computer system.