It’s hard growing old, and it’s even harder to have to acknowledge you might need some help. If you have elderly parents, you might have had this conversation with them or are dreading doing so. For most, a nursing home is not an option: your parents may want to stay at home. Your concern then is how they’ll be able to get through daily activities when you’re not around.
Check out these 5 aging-in-place tech products that keep your loved ones safe and your mind at ease.
Your mom might still be independent enough to cook her own meals, or she has someone prepare meals but enjoys making herself an afternoon cup of tea. In both cases, walking away from the stove and forgetting to turn it off is easy to do.
With the Wallflower Stove Monitor for electric stoves, you just need to plug it into the stove’s power outlet. You’ll be alerted when the stove is turned on and if it’s on longer than usual. If your mom has a smartphone, she and you can be notified if she’s gone more than 1000 feet from the stove. You won’t have to worry about a fire starting: the app alerts when Mom’s still close enough to turn it off. The Wallflower Stove Monitor is currently available for $129.
Are you worried that your dad’s overly-friendly attitude or your mom’s trusting nature means they’ll open the door to just about anyone?
The Ring doorbell alerts your parents or you when someone presses the doorbell or triggers the motion sensors. It’s connected via WiFi or Ethernet and lets you see and speak with whoever’s at the door.
No need to be concerned that your mom might be inviting the next Ted Bundy in for tea. Prices start at $179.
Elderly independence means if something happens at home, it might be a while until someone comes to visit or notices. With the Life Alert system, your parents can be connected to emergency services 24/7. With just a click of a button, your mom or dad can speak to an emergency dispatcher who can send emergency services to help.
The main unit can be set up with a cell or landline and has a backup battery that lasts up to 72 hours in case of a power outage. The emergency pendant is waterproof and has an 800-foot range and can be worn around the wrist or as a necklace. It has a battery that lasts up to 7 years.
Install the waterproof HELP button in the bathroom for your dad to use if he’s slipped in the shower or can’t get out of the tub.
For times when your mom is out on a walk or picking up groceries, the Life Alert Mobile will keep her safe. The battery doesn’t have to be changed for up to 10 years and has GPS included. Regular cell phone users can call the Life Alert Center on speed dial and smartphone users can use the Emergency Mobile app. This is a great option for parents who might not feel safe being out alone.
Getting forgetful is another symptom of getting older and while for the most part it can be harmless, skipping or overdosing medicine is a real problem. Whether your parent has a daily caregiver or you visit often, the MedMinder can be set up for a month of daily medicine.
The MedMinder is a digital pill dispenser that looks like your typical 7-day model and has a locked version. You, or the caregiver, fill the tray and program the schedule online. Once it’s time for medicine, the compartment will flash or unlock so the wrong pills won’t be taken.
If your parent doesn’t take the medicine after a while, MedMinder will beep and a recorded message from you or the caregiver will play, reminding them to take the pills. You’ll receive an alert if the pills still haven’t been touched after that. Pricing starts at $39.99 a month.
Falling is something that affects many of our beloved parents. In fact, 1 in 4 adults over the age of 65 fall every year. That’s pretty serious once you realize that 10,000 people turn 65 a day. Falling is the most common cause of death due to injury for seniors and there’s a 2/3 chance of falling again within 6 months. You’ll want to make sure your parent has an easy-to-use fall detection service in place, especially one that doesn’t need a button pressed to be alerted.
The Philips GoSafe pendant is waterproof and its battery lasts up to 7 days. When at home, it connects to the in-home Communicator base station which allows you to use the help button or speak with a representative through the speaker phone.If your mom is out and about by herself, the GoSafe pendant can automatically alert the response center that she’s fallen and uses 6 location technologies to pinpoint her location. She’ll be able to use the two-way voice to speak with the representative so that she doesn’t feel alone or helpless.The Philips GoSafe starts at $54.95 a month for landline and $64.95 for cell connection.
It can be frustrating to see your parents refuse extra help while being stubborn that they want to stay independent. These 5 products can help keep them safe and you relaxed.