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What are Assistive Devices?
Assistive devices and technologies are great for seniors that prefer to maintain their daily activities and routines while encouraging personal freedom and prolonging independent living. Many seniors, who live alone in their own homes, might have trouble with mobility.
For individuals with senior parents, safety is a major concern. As a person ages, there is a decline in agility and an increase in unsteadiness. This results in falls leading to serious injuries for seniors. Simple tasks such as getting out of bed, dressing or performing personal hygiene routines become challenging.
This is where assistive devices and technologies come into play. It aids seniors to daily living, and enhance overall wellbeing. They can also help prevent impairments and secondary health conditions, so you don’t have to worry about the safety of your senior parents.
Assistive Devices for the Elderly
Many companies in the year 2019 to 2020 have been developing products and “gadgets” that offer benefits to seniors. If you’re an older adult who’s wondering what technology is available, or you’re a middle-aged reader whose parents now need assistance around the house, this article is for you.
Muscle tremors are one of the common conditions that arise in people as they age. These tremors make it hard to complete daily tasks. This technology uses sensors and motion and has the ability to reduce the tremor by 70%.
If you struggle to hold your cutlery straight while eating, this gadget will vastly increase the quality of your mealtime, ensuring nothing falls off your spoon. The Parkinson’s gyroscope spoon is another popular adaptive device that can be used to control the tremors during mealtime.
- GYENNO steady Spoon electronically stabilizes so the attached utensil shakes 85% less than your hand. Worry less about spilling and focus on enjoying your meal.
- GYENNO portable tableware includes two parts: a stabilizing handle and a utensil attachment. Switch on and off automatically, automatically turn to sleeping mode when you stop using.
- GYENNO tremor Spoon has ergonomic design which adapted to the general Hands Use habit, total weight 130g, easy to hold and to prevent from slippery.
- Spoon and fork kit ( Fork is included) , for all kinds of meals, include an everyday spoon, a fork attachment
- At GYENNO, we have strongly confidence on our products. Every GYENNO product includes an 6-month, worry-free Guarantee.If you have any problem or suggestion, please contact us freely, we will provide friendly support for you in 24 hr.
2. USB Dolphin SuperNova Magnifier:
For some seniors, reading on the phone, ipad, or computer can be challenging. There are a few products and apps to choose from, but one of the best is the USB Dolphin SuperNova Magnifier.
The app magnifies on-screen text up to 64 times — you’ll get roughly three lines of text on your entire screen. The best thing about this app is that all of the world’s most common languages are supported.
- Crystal-clear text-and-image screen magnification up to 64x for blind users and people with low vision and visual impairments
- Natural-sounding voice reads aloud as you type and works with web pages, apps, documents, and emails
- When coupled with a scanner, capable of scanning and reading aloud paper documents
- Braille input-output support - PLUS: Intelligent Screen Reader speaks spelling and formatting to ensure letter-perfect documents and emails
- Touchscreen magnification for Windows tablets and touchscreen laptops; Supports: Windows 7, 8.1, and 10; as well as Desktop Computers
Doing regular house chores can be extremely difficult for seniors that require senior mobility aid. Many elderly have reduced strength, stamina, or physical capacity, making it difficult to use heavy-duty vacuums or to get on their hands and knees to scrub floors.
This is where the Roomba comes in. They boast multi-room navigation, a three-stage cleaning process, and a filter for allergens and other microscopic dirt. There are many other Roomba like products that have also shown to increase the quality of life of seniors living alone.
- Sleek, premium design complements your home décor; Includes 1 dual mode virtual wall barrier for more control over where your robot cleans
- 3 stage cleaning system and dual multi surface brushes pick up everything from small particles to large debris
- Patented dirt detect sensors alert roomba to work harder on concentrated areas of dirt, such as high traffic zones of your home
- Full suite of intelligent sensors guide the robot under and around furniture to help thoroughly clean your floors
- Clean and schedule from anywhere with the iRobot home app; Compatible with amazon Alexa and the google assistant. Mobile device compatible software version: iphone: ios 11 or higher, android: OS 5.0 or higher
4. Ring Video Doorbell Pro
Seniors that suffer from a hearing loss might not realize when someone is knocking on the front door. The Ring Video Doorbell Pro includes a video feature that is connected to your smartphone.
When someone rings the bell, there will be an instant smartphone notification pop-up. Along with the video, it also has a built-in microphone, which will also allow you to talk to the person in real-time.
- 1080p HD video doorbell that lets you see, hear and speak to people from your phone, tablet, or select Echo device. Includes privacy features, such as customizable privacy zones and audio privacy, to focus only on what's relevant to you.
- Get notifications whenever motion is detected by customizing your motion zones.
- With Live View, you can check in on your home any time through the Ring app.
- Easily setup your Ring Video Doorbell Pro by connecting to wifi via the Ring app and mounting in your desired location.
- Connects to existing doorbell wiring for constant power. Requires a transformer (not included): 16-24VAC, 40VA max, 50/60Hz. No halogen or garden lighting transformers; no DC transformer/power supply.
5. Bed and Chair Fallguard
Experiencing a nasty fall can be traumatizing and can even lead to serious injuries. Worst-case scenario, after you fall, you might not be able to get back up and make a phone call for help.
That’s where the Bed and Chair Fallguard from Assisted Living Technologies come in. As soon as s senior with mobility concerns leaves their bed or chair, their immediate caregiver gets an alert.
- Caregiver Alarms offer an efficient method of monitoring when a patient is getting up from a bed.
- Volume control is located on Bed Alarm. The bed pad should be placed below lower sheet either across the center back area or the buttocks. Cord from pad runs along the side of the mattress and securely connects to the bed monitor which can be attached to the bed or wall or it can be placed in a convenient location nearby.
- To silence the bed exit alarm, simply press the reset button located on the side of the alarm.
- To operate, simply place pad under your patient's back or buttock area, (beneath the lower sheet) and alarm will sound as they sit up and before they put their feet on the ground. Pads are made of a soft vinyl, with foam interior, and are sealed for incontinence protection.
- Monitor requires (1) One 9Volt battery (Not Included) or the AC-02 Adapter (not included)
6. Amazon Alexa
This assistive device has been previously discussed in detail (reference “Amazon Alexa good for elderly article”). Alexa is Amazon’s virtual assistant AI. When you ask a question to Alexa, it uses a cloud-based service designed by Amazon to retrieve an answer to your question.
It is designed to mimic real-life conversations. Sure, it might not be great for someone who’s not tech-savvy, but if you have physical limitations due to age or illness, Alexa can be a game-changer. In my opinion, this would be the best technology for seniors to have in their homes when living alone.
- Alexa App is a companion to your Amazon Echo, Dot, Tap and Show for setup, remote control, and enhanced features.
- Amazon Echo is hands-free and voice-controlled, never requires charging, and is at home in the kitchen or in any room.
- Alexa is always ready to play your favorite music, provide weather and news updates, answer questions, create lists, and much more.
- English (Publication Language)
There are various other products for seniors living at home that can be bought online and in stores to make your like so much easier and improve the quality of living. Just to name a few more briefly:
- Mobility aids: such as wheelchairs, scooters, walkers, canes, crutches, prosthetic devices, and orthotic devices.
- Hearing aids: to help people hear or hear more clearly.
- Cognitive aids: to help people with memory, attention, or other challenges in their thinking skills.
- Computer software and hardware: voice recognition programs, screen readers, and screen enlargement applications, to help people with mobility and sensory impairments use computers and mobile devices.
- Home built-in equipment including: ramps, grab bars, and wider doorways to enable access to buildings, businesses, and workplaces.
- Adaptive switches and utensils to allow those with limited motor skills to eat, play games, and accomplish other activities.
- Devices and features of devices to help perform tasks such as cooking, dressing, and grooming.
Senior Mobility Aids and Devices for the Elderly to Assist in Walking
1. Uplift Seat Assist
This adaptive seating device can be used in combination with an armchair, or sofa to manually lift the user into a standing position without overexertion or strain. This is a very useful device for people living with arthritis, and other joint ailments who struggle to rise from a seated position to standing without pain.
Like previously mentioned, assistive devices can greatly improve the independence and livelihood of your senior parent. Especially handicap assistance devices to help with mobility without having to worry about the safety.
By investing in items to help your loved one perform their daily activities, not only will you help to restore their freedom and mobility, you will also have peace of mind that they are comfortable.
- Self-powered, lifting cushion that assists you gently up and down from an armchair or sofa.
- Hydro-pneumatic lift actuator lifts up to 80% of body weight 10" high.
- Six different weight adjustments to choose from.
- High density, super comfortable memory foam with removable, easy to clean cover. Size: 18" x 7". Weighs only 8 lbs.
- 80-230 lb. Capacity.
2. Walking Canes
This device can come in all shapes, sizes, and styles. The device is one of the oldest and cheapest assistive devices that exist.
They are highly effective at decreasing the amount of weight placed on lower-body joints, for individuals with arthritis, seniors and as well as those recovering from surgery.
- Cutting-edge, patented technology allows the HurryCane, the #1 selling cane in America, to feel like a seamless extension of the body
- Innovative SteadiGrip stabilizing technology increases traction and improves balance during both indoor and outdoor use
- Customize the fit of the HurryCane by adjusting the handle height setting between 30.5" and 37.5". Base size: 3.5 inch, folded size: 13.7 inch
- The HurryCane stands on its own by your side when you need it, and folds up compactly in seconds when you’re sitting. Do not use cane if cord is cut, frayed or damaged
- Weight capacity: 350 pounds; The importance of HurryCane is keeping people mobile. The HurryCane's pivoting base gives users a point of contact with the cane at all times
Going up and down the stairs can be a daunting and scary task for someone with disabilities or for the elderly. This device, although slightly underrated, is finally gaining the popularity that it needs.
- Made in America! 3 Safety Mechanisms. Wireless Remote. 350lb Capacity. Warranty
- Folds up flat to wall - easy to still use the stairs! Installs on either side of stairs.
- Comes with 15 Feet of Track - Plenty for typical one-floor installations.
- Power Cord plugs directly into your regular AC outlet - NO Wiring required.
- Internal Rechargeable Battery Backup- runs up/down 20+ times if power is out
4. Two-Wheel Walkers
This device is simply a walker with two wheels. Like walking canes, they have been found to be effective at preventing falls, and they are ideal for older adults with moderate to severe balance issues and individuals with lower-body weakness.
This stems from the fact that two-wheel walkers can support up to one-half of a person’s body weight when used correctly.
- Comes with wheels and a vinyl contoured hand grip. With your arm extended down, handle should be at wrist height. With your hand placed on the hand grip, your elbow should be flexed 20 to 30 inch
- Each side operates independently to allow easy movement through narrow spaces and greater stability while standing
- Easy push button mechanisms may be operated by fingers, palms or side of hand
- Newly designed rear glide cap allows for walker to slide easily and smoothly over most surfaces
- Sturdy 1 inch diameter aluminum construction ensures maximum strength while remaining lightweight. Do not use on stairs or escalator. Caution be aware of electrical cords in way, liquids on floor, throw rugs, toys or debris, furniture, doors and door steps and gaps in floor
5. Activator poles increase balance and motility
Each pole can hold up to 200 pounds of weight and offers a bell-shaped tip for stability and an ergonomically correct handle for core strengthening. The poles are adjustable to accommodate all body shapes and sizes and can be used both indoors and outdoors.
- 2-section collapsible walking poles, adjustable to walker heights up to 6', ergonomic CoreGrip, bell-shaped tips, button locking system.
- ACTIVATOR Poles were designed specifically for rehab by an occupational therapist. The unique features of these poles – including, ergonomic CoreGrip, bell-shaped tips for stability, anti-vibration features, and a secure button locking system for weight bearing, strapless grip – offer stability with your safety in mind.
- Reduces the impact on hip and knee joints, improves core strength and posture, and helps promote a functional gait pattern.
- May be suitable for post/hip knee surgery, MS, Parkinson’s, osteoarthritis, ABI and reducing the risk of falls.
- Consult your physician, therapist or treating rehabilitation specialist to see if the ACTIVATOR Poles are right for you.
Living alone offers a sense of security, comfort, and familiarity. If you are a senior, living in your own home, being able to do things on your own doesn’t have to be difficult. Though total isolation probably isn’t a good thing, for some, the feeling of living alone and independently feels good.
“My last chapter of life is ending. I enjoy every moment. Every sunrise,sunset,and rain is beautiful. I smile and laugh with people in stores. I see friends. I live alone but I’m never by myself. Memories and my cat live with me” – unknown author
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Last update on 2020-09-23 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API