Top 6 benefits of encouraging your loved one to use technology
It’s certainly not uncommon for elderly people to feel a little intimidated by technology. Consequently, they may feel reluctant to try their hand at getting to know a device. It’s not something they became accustomed to growing up, and its fast-paced development can be a little overwhelming for some. However, encouraging your loved one to use technology can offer them a multitude of benefits. These can be maintaining interpersonal connections, or stimulating cognitive activity.
Maintain connections with others
Not everyone lives as close to friends and family members as they would like. Thankfully, though, advancements in technology have offered a sense of comfort and relief. Video calling and messaging capabilities mean that relatives can stay in touch no matter how far apart they live. This is something that’s valued greatly, particularly by the older generations.
An iPad or tablet is a popular device amongst seniors, as its larger screen and larger text capabilities are more functional and visually suitable. FaceTime and Skype are popular applications used to speak to loved ones face-to-face through a device. This allows them to easily stay in contact with family and friends, reducing feelings of loneliness amongst seniors.
Independence becomes increasingly more precious as we age – and for seniors, it helps to retain a sense of purpose and feelings of self-esteem. Technology can help seniors hold on to their independence, as it can offer assistance with a number of everyday issues. From health tracking to offering NHS healthcare advice at the click of a button, elderly individuals can continue to take more control of their lives.
The Amazon Alexa device is becoming increasingly popular within the home, and acts as a virtual assistant. From reading news and weather reports to offering games and reading audiobooks, the Alexa provides convenient, entertaining solutions to daily needs. It’s a particularly valuable device for the older generations, since tasks can be done without the need to lift a finger.
Cognitive stimulation (virtual reality technology)
The concept of virtual reality has been around for quite some time, but it’s never been as high quality – and, well, realistic – as it is today. Although VR has been great for entertainment, it’s now used for a wide variety of other purposes – many of which offer welcome relief and therapy. It’s now widely used to stimulate our memory and motor skills, which has become particularly valuable for the elderly. For the people who live with us, this means that they can experience things that they might not otherwise have the ability to do. They can choose from a range of experiences – from the bottom of the ocean to the tip of a mountain. It becomes a very real experience when a VR headset comes into play.
Many appreciate VR for its ability to bring back special memories. With the use of a VR headset, the people in our home would have the option to select from a range of historical experiences, taking them back to important times in their lives. This encourages cognitive activity and thus, helps to reduce the risk of long term conditions, such as dementia.
Mental & physical exercise
It’s essential that with age, we remain both mentally and physically active; failing to do so can leave the older generation more susceptible to injuries and chronic illnesses. The older generations can make use of a wide range of applications to keep them moving, with a range of video games and online videos designed to encourage exercise.
Similarly, devices can be used by the elderly generation to stimulate cognitive activity. They’ll have access to a plethora of interactive games and puzzles that work to simultaneously provide entertainment and slow the rate of cognitive decline.
Offers a sense of security
Similarly to independence, a feeling of security becomes more valuable as we age. Advancements in technology have allowed us to feel more secure, giving us almost instant access to healthcare and emergency services. For the elderly, this means they can notify someone of a potential illness or condition much more quickly. Big button smartphones can offer a solution for the elderly, giving them an easy-to-use device that holds their necessary contacts.
Technology offers convenience
Technology devices offer solutions for common issues that can become a little more troublesome for the elderly. For example, managing finances, grocery shopping and various other personal services are likely not as easily done as they once were. With access to a tablet or computer, the user can access these services from the comfort of their own armchair. Similarly, TV shows, movies and news reports are all available at the touch of a button.
At Foxholes care home, we’re passionate about spreading happiness and feelings of security amongst our residents. To find out more about our care, please click here.