Seniors should stay home and isolated to stay safe. Video chats and food delivery apps can be lifesavers. Practicing social distancing can help stop the spread of coronavirus. But that also means you won’t be seeing much of people outside of your household for a while, which could be an issue as well.
Technology Might Be the Helping Hand Seniors Need
There’s new technology that helps keep us together even when we have to be apart. Not all seniors have an issue using technology, but they are more likely to have trouble more than any other generation. They’re also the people who are more likely to be affected by social isolation, which has a myriad of negative health effects all on its own.
The Centers for Disease Control recommend that seniors stay home as much as possible due to the virus’s higher fatality rate for people ages 60 and above. We asked a few experts about what tech older adults should learn to use to stave off loneliness and stay healthy while ensuring that their needs are met.
Top 5 Technological Tips for Seniors During Coronavirus
1. Talk To Your Loved Ones
During these times of isolation, it’s important for seniors to keep up with communication. It’s essential for both their mental and physical health to keep in touch with loved ones.
We’re not only overcoming the coronavirus, but combatting the fear and anxiety of social isolation. It’s important to stay in touch with your loved ones and let them know that they haven’t been cut off or marginalized. Seniors who can navigate a smartphone, can use apps like Facebook Messenger, Skype, and WhatsApp.
Apps that let loved ones see and hear each other, like FaceTime or Skype, have the added bonus of letting you see how stressed your loved one looks and if they’re keeping up their home. An indication of their health, which can provide a lot of insight.
2. Keep The Groceries Coming
It’s essential for seniors to get their groceries, but there can be an easier way than going to the store. At this point in time it’s a risk for seniors to leave the house to get their groceries because it increases the chance of coming into contact with the virus. Websites and apps allow for seniors to choose their items online and get them delivered to their home.
Food delivery services and mail order pharmacies are a really good idea these days. Websites like Amazon Fresh, Instacart, Fresh Direct, and Peapod are all good ways to order food. Meanwhile, Amazon is prioritizing essential items like household goods and medical supplies to make sure they stay in stock and ship quickly. Most stores have online ordering options these days, too.
3. Active Fitness Routine
Being cooped up inside the house might be difficult for seniors who are used to staying active. With senior centers that offer exercise classes and equipment shuttered, regular gyms closed, and other group exercise activities like mall walks called off for the foreseeable future, seniors can turn to technology to stay moving. Search YouTube for senior-focused exercise videos and check the app store for senior workout apps.
Check out these 6 health and fitness apps for senior:
4. Staying Up-To-Date With Your Health
Staying fit isn’t the only health concern for older people, especially in these times. Seniors generally have more health problems and needs than younger people, technology can provide some help. There is a medical alert system for seniors with underlying health issues. It’s as simple to use as pushing a button, so there’s no learning curve.
Getting and keeping track of prescription drugs can be done through several apps. Medisafe reminds users to take their medications, while CareZone uses a device’s camera to scan medication prescription labels so it can remind the user when to take and refill them.
Finally, telemedicine services allow people to virtually consult with their doctor and other health professionals, reducing the need to seek medical attention in person. Urge people to help older loved ones navigate the technology needed to take advantage of the program if they can’t do it themselves.
Ultimately, all of these tech solutions are only as helpful as a senior’s ability and desire to actually use them. If your loved one just can’t get the hang of apps and devices — or simply doesn’t want to bother with them — don’t fret. Your grandmother may never get the hang of using an iPhone, but she almost certainly knows how to use a regular phone; she’s probably been using one her entire life. She can always call stores and restaurants to order supplies and food for delivery, or call a tech-savvy loved one to make the online order for her.
The Victorian Assisted Living and Retirement Community
The Victorian is an assisted living and retirement community that makes living independently, while at the same time feeling safe and secure, a reality. We strive to provide the best quality of life for all residents including those suffering from loneliness and depression.
We offer a comprehensive activity program that includes both physical and social activities to encourage emotional well-being. Our staff is trained to assist those with depression. If you or a loved one are considering assisted living, contact The Victorian today to learn more about our services or tour our community.