As the senior population of the United States continues to grow, the high-tech sector is developing new products to enhance their lives and that of their loved ones. Experts predict that by the end of 2017 the market for technology geared to the elderly should be valued at about $30 billion. Many of those products simultaneously enhance the independence of seniors while also improving the peace of mind of those who care about them and their well-being.
One class of products are medication management devices. When you realize that people 65 and over are taking, on average, five types of medicine per day, it becomes clear that the drug taking needs to be managed. There are talking clocks that can be programmed to say things like, “Hey mom, its lunch time and time to take your red and green pills. Remember to eat something along with them,” throughout the day. Another device meant to accomplish the same task is a pill dispenser that flashes and/or unlocks the pills at the pre-scheduled times. A relative or caregiver can be automatically notified if the pills are not taken.
Another class of senior tech devices improves personal safety. They are called PERS, short for personal emergency response systems, and include pendants and wristbands which can be pressed during emergencies to alert medical personnel and/or family members. Some of these devices only work when the senior is at home, but others will work anywhere, and include fall detection that is triggered even if the person who fell does not call for help.
Care coordination devices allow several responsible parties to better share the job of helping with mom and/or dad. These devices allow the care team to know who is on duty at a given time, allowing the others to relax, knowing the task is under control.
These devices and others can make life easier and reduce worry for everyone involved in caring for, or being the elderly loved one.