According to suggestions, 90 percent of the elderly population over the age of 65 state that they would prefer to stay in their current home as they age. Almost everybody in their prime years will choose to age in place rather than being sent to any institution or home care.
With the continuous emergence of digital technology that improves the quality of life of those aging, it is now feasible for the elderly to live conveniently while enjoying life in the comfort of their homes. Examples would be residential elevator lifts, wired and wireless tech gadgets such as cctv cameras for monitoring, smart watches and phones for constant medicine reminders, pedometers to monitor activities and many other technologies that caters the health and wellness of a person.
An elderly person can be left alone at home with the aid of these helpful technologies and as long as he or she is capable to solely perform activities of daily living. Allowing people to live independently boosts self-esteem and having them monitored from time-to-time grants them a sense of safety and security.
However, not all of the geriatric population are tech-savvy and are apt to use these kinds of high-tech gadgets. Although these gadgets are touted as easy to use, we should always consider and assess the elderly’s cognitive capability and health conditions. A 80-year old who suffers from an impaired vision (even with the help of eyeglasses) may experience difficulty in reading compared to a 60-year old.
This is when it is important for family members to intervene and help aging parents to use the devices. Sometimes this will take numerous reminders and attempts to implement because the “eye in the sky” is unfamiliar and intrusive. However, when faced with the alternatives of living in retirement facilities, it is usually preferred. My parents are taking advantage of several technological advances and I am very grateful that they can live alone and still be “overseen”.
As one of the baby boomer population, I admit that I would love to age at home along with my loving husband. But as years will pass by, I know that we can’t do things on our own like we can today. These technological advancements are currently handy in terms of convenience, for communication purposes and improving our quality of life. The “Internet of Things” that will be around in the next 10 to 15 years will make this all seem like ancient history.
Photo by Rachel Zack