Distance caregiving for an elderly loved-one can be a challenge; trying to ensure they are eating well, taking medications properly, getting to doctor appointments and not being taken advantage of by those trusted to help provide care.
But technology is giving family caregivers the tools to keep track of daily life and notice small changes before they become serious problems for older adults. For example, financial monitoring software like Eversafe can keep track of unusual transactions and alert families, protecting their loved-one from identity theft and elder financial abuse. When spending patterns change or regular deposits are missing, if there are unusual cash withdrawals or unauthorized credit card use, trusted caregivers are alerted. The software allows monitoring but does not store account numbers or allow money to be moved.
Seniors are increasingly using technology to allow them to remain safely at home, even when family lives at a distance, delaying or possibly avoiding the need for costly nursing homes or long term care facilities before seniors are really ready for that move. Beyond personal call buttons, homes can be fitted with sensors that track movement around the home, sending reports than can indicate a change in pattern. GPS systems for seniors who may become lost, medication dispensing services and video monitoring are other ways technology can help a growing number of seniors age in place.
Researchers are also using technology to help caregivers and medical specialists track health with the use of wireless blood pressure and cardiac monitors. And while some seniors will find all this technology in their home invasive, if managed carefully within appropriate boundaries, many of these devices can help promote rather than limit independence.
To learn more about technology which can help foster successful aging in place, visit the American Association for Retired Persons website.