According to Harvard Medical School, staying social can be as important to healthy aging as not smoking, or maintaining a healthy weight. Social media can help people connect with family, or even reconnect with old friends.
Skype and video chat can’t replace in person visits, but they do allow you to see the faces of family members, regardless of distance.
Video Games for Body and Mind
The Nintendo Wii, a game system controlled by motion, has become a hit with seniors. Games like Wii Sports offer fun, light, exercise in the comfort of your home. It is also a great activity to play with grandchildren or other seniors.
Simple puzzle, trivia, or matching games available as apps on mobile devices are also good tools to make sure you’re keeping your mind as active as your body.
Smartphones and Tablets
These devices are platforms for social media, video chat, and the games mentioned above. They’re also becoming easier to operate. Today’s phones have larger screens and buttons as well as voice recognition.
Both devices also give you access to apps that can help you track finances, medications and take care of other important daily tasks.
Books are wonderful. Unfortunately, some avid readers can grow frustrated because of small print or messy, cluttered bookshelves. E-readers, on the other hand have adjustable font sizes for easy reading, and store hundreds of books in a device the size of a novella.
E-readers can also connect to libraries, meaning that you can take out books from the comfort of your home, which is ideal for seniors without transportation.
Bulky listening devices can make some seniors go without hearing aids altogether. Over the years, however, hearing aids have become smaller and less visible. Some can even be implanted into the ear itself.
Home Assistive Devices
The right technology can help you overcome everyday challenges and remain independent. Home monitoring systems can detect falls and even track vital signs without being too intrusive.
There are also appliances that dispense medication, shut off the stove automatically, and provide LED lighting that create a safe and convenient home life.
Voice Activated Homes
Apple, Amazon, and Google all offer voice activated smart devices that give you greater control over your home. You can reduce the risk of falling by turning the lights on from your bed, or even the next room. Or adjust the temperature, turn on the sprinklers, or even close the blinds with a simple voice command.
As quickly as seniors adopt technologies, more are being developed. Soon there will be even more ways to connect with family, stay active, and foster better health. We encourage you to take a little time to look into how the right technology can enrich your body, mind, and soul.