As seniors get older, the risk of becoming socially isolated increases significantly. The elderly face an increased risk of losing loved ones and friends, but technology can be used to help mitigate this problem and fight social isolation. The following are some ways technology can help reduce social isolation in the elderly.
A location-based technology (e.g., a cell phone) can help ease social isolation by connecting seniors to their community, as well as to family and friends. For example, seniors might benefit from a technology that allows them to send a text message or make a call simply by touching a button on their phone. Emergency services could also be accessed with one touch of a button; otherwise, an older adult may feel that calling for help is too difficult.
Video Calling and Interaction
With video calling and chat apps for both desktops and smartphones, seniors no longer have to sit idly by waiting for their children or grandchildren to call them. With Skype, FaceTime, and WhatsApp, you can check in with your loved ones anytime they need you—and keep up to date on their lives as well.
Why Social Networking Matters
The rise of social media and other forms of technology has made social isolation one of society’s biggest problems, but there are a few ways you can combat it. Whether you live alone or not, social networking is a great way to keep up with friends and family members. If you or your parents don’t have much technical experience, show them how they can use Facebook to reconnect with old friends and family.
Choosing a voice assistant will have a major impact on how technology is incorporated into your life. If you plan to take advantage of Alexa or Google Assistant, opt for a speaker that works with those platforms as well. You can speak directly to your device and ask it questions without having to pick up your phone. However, not all assistants are compatible with all devices; each company has its own ecosystem and products, so make sure yours work together before you buy them!
Alexa and Google Assistant are widely available and make it easy to connect with friends and family. If you own an Alexa-enabled speaker, you can set up a drop-in session so your friends or relatives can ask for your help at any time. Or, if you have a Google Home device, you can enable Personal Results to answer questions like Will I need an umbrella today? or find out when your favorite team plays next.
Creating a Customized Experience for Each User
By creating customized experiences for each user, Storii is a personalized service that improves family connections. Whether you’re using it to connect with your kids or grandparents, it’s important to remember that technology should be used as a tool to strengthen relationships—not replace them. Technology can help reduce social isolation by making it easier to stay connected with loved ones and share stories across generations.
Communication Apps for All Ages
Technology has evolved to provide a variety of apps and websites that help people of all ages communicate with family and friends. There are online groups, forums, chat rooms, and email/text messaging services for senior citizens. By opening up new forms of communication, technology reduces social isolation in older age by helping seniors stay connected to family members.
Virtual Reality Is Coming to Senior Care
An increasing number of technology companies are coming up with virtual reality programs designed to help seniors overcome feelings of social isolation. With a VR headset and app, seniors can connect to friends and family across great distances, attend school events they wouldn’t otherwise be able to or just enjoy a leisurely day out on a beach. This futuristic technology isn’t widely available yet, but there are more affordable ways for people who may feel socially isolated to access quality communication tools and keep in touch with friends and family.
Wearables are Here to Stay
Wearable tech is changing all aspects of our lives, from how we interact with friends and family to how we do business and even get exercise. If you’re worried about reducing social isolation in older adults, it might be time to consider wearable technology as a possible solution for loneliness or depression.
And it’s not just about smartwatches; there are many different types of wearables on the market that can help connect seniors with their families and local communities while keeping them active, healthy, and safe. Wearable tech has plenty of benefits when it comes to reducing social isolation and helping seniors stay healthy. One important benefit is that wearables can help people stay active, which keeps them both mentally and physically fit.
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Storii gives you access to a database of thousands of life story questions and prompts. Questions can be answered with video, audio, text, and/or images. Answers can easily be shared, downloaded, or printed off as a keepsake. Family members and friends can be granted access to contribute to, or view your life story.
Crunched for time? Not sure about using an app? Storii's Life Story Calls makes it super simple to capture your memories and stories. You can even use a landline number! You can learn more about how Storii helps reduce social isolation and loneliness here.