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How Seniors Can Risk-Proof Their Homes with Today’s Technology

December 20, 2015

12:30 pm

As we get older the challenges of living alone in our homes grows. Different medical conditions, limited mobility, hearing and vision issues are some among many factors that can contribute to making independent lives complicated or even impossible. Seniors often prefer to stay in their own home, where they have spent all their lives and where they are surrounded with all the beautiful memories, as opposed to moving to a nursing home or assisted-living facilities.

Even though seniors who are over 65 did not grow up with technology, today’s smart home gadgets can make a huge difference in their lives. Technology has reached peak levels that made amazing things possible. Medical monitoring and alert services have become popular in the last decade, due to the fact that these technologies allow seniors to keep living in their own homes as they grow old. These technologies help seniors live fully functional and independent lives while maintaining a considerable level of safety.

Let us check out some of the neat options for risk-proofing your home or home of your loved ones:

Medical Alert Services

Medical alert systems are designed with seniors in mind as the main target group. These systems usually consist of a base station unit, which is a device that the user needs to place in a central location in their home, and a wearable help button. The base station uses either landline or cellular network to make connection with the monitoring center. When the user presses the help button, the base station initiates a two-way voice connection with a monitoring center where trained operators provide assistance. The idea is to allow seniors to get quick and professional help if anything goes wrong.

Dialing 911, or just reaching a phone when emergency strikes is often just not possible. Medical alert systems on the other hand have this neat help button that is easy to activate. Some of the systems also come with a help button that can detect falls and automatically call for help even if the person is unconscious.

When trained agents at the monitoring center get on the line, they will speak with the person in need and try to assess the situation. Then, they take necessary measures depending on the nature of the emergency. The actions range from only comforting the person in need, to calling family members, neighbors or even dispatching local emergency services. Call center agents have all the necessary information about the person in need displayed right on their screen, as soon as the call is made. This makes dispatching local emergency services quick and so much more efficient. We all know that there is a “golden hour”, a time slot during which people who receive help, will have most chances of successful recovery. Medical alert systems come with the range of options. Systems can be designed for in-home use only, or present fully mobile solutions which seniors can take with them anywhere they go.

Fire, CO2, Smoke and Other Sensors

Lots of companies nowadays offer different range of sensors. Installing fire or smoke detectors can be a good move towards ensuring safety of your elderly loved ones. There are also other types of sensors out there that can detect flooding or certain actions in the home, such as opening of windows or for example opening fridge doors. Some companies offer integration of these smart sensors with medical alert services for increased protection and wellness monitoring.

Vital Signs Monitoring

This is one of the latest technologies making its move into consumers’ homes. Similar to medical alert service, today it is possible to acquire technology that allows for vital signs monitoring. Vital signs data is sent via modem that is located in the home of the user, to the monitoring center where professionals monitor the data regularly. This makes it possible to have a full insight into protected person’s health, as well as to notice any possible signs of health deterioration early on, making hospital bills lower and recovery more likely.

Remote Video Monitoring

Remote video is all around us. Seniors usually all know how to use services like Facetime or Skype to communicate with their family. These software solutions are great, but what if a person needs 24/7 video monitoring? Family members or care takers can purchase remove video cameras that can provide this functionality. These cameras make it easy for family members to keep an eye on their loved ones, even when they are not around. These cameras often provide two-way voice communication and various advanced features, such as movement detection. Remote video can be accessed from anywhere by authorized users (often family or dedicated caretakers) using a computer, a smartphone or a tablet device.

Risk-proofing homes of seniors can make a huge impact on the quality of their lives. Seniors can keep living alone in their own homes, keeping their dignity and independence while not sacrificing safety in any way. Technology makes it possible nowadays to call for help with a push of a button, to get help from doctors who remotely monitor vital signs and to stay in touch with loved ones via 24/7 remote video feeds. What is great is that this technology is very user-friendly and it is fully adapted to be operated by seniors. This means that seniors can easily adopt this technology and live happy lives while being protected and having a safety layer all around.

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