Assistive Technology for Alzheimer’s Patient’s Social Engagement
While time is yet to bring us a cure for Alzheimer’s, it has fortunately brought new technological innovations which can ease the burden of both: caregivers and patients.
Dementia can be extremely overwhelming and frightening for those living with the disease those who care for them. However, these new technologies can help establish a new routine, ease anxiety and improve the quality of life for everyone who is involved in the struggle.
Here are 7 assistive devices that can help promote independence alongside managing potential safety risks and reducing stress around the house.
GPS Location and Tracking Devices.
It is not unusual for Alzheimer’s patients to wander off. It can be difficult to keep a watch on such patients at all times. A location tracking device is a great option to keep track of where the patient is. Tracking devices can be worn to initiate an alert system that lets the caregiver know if their loved one has left a certain place or has lost the way. This technology can also alert emergency services to ensure a safe and quick recovery safe and quick recovery by prompt service delivery to the place where the patient is.
Picture phones have been specially designed for Alzheimer’s patients to cope up with memory loss especially in emergency situations when the patient cannot remember the name or the phone number of their loved one. These phones have large numbers for ease of use and are pre-programmable with phone numbers that are frequently dialed. Some of these phones even come with clear buttons where photos can be placed in the place of the number which, allows the patient to just push the button associated with the photos to call a specific person quickly.
In-home cameras are a great way to ensure the safety of your loved one when you aren’t there to keep a close eye on them. Keeping a camera focused on certain areas of your home such as the room containing medication and the main room where your loved one spends most of their time and also the front and backyard, can help you feel confident and secure that your loved one is doing okay. Some cameras even allow you to stay in contact with your loved one and can also monitor movement. You will also be informed if there is no movement detected for a long period of time.
Home Monitoring Devices
Home monitoring devices are great for long distance caregivers who want to ensure the safety of their loved ones on a daily basis. These devices allow lights to be turned on and off, thermostats to be changed and can also allow different types of safety measures that can send alerts via smartphone.
Electrical appliances and assistive technologies used to monitor gadgets in the house are specially designed for caregivers who do not live with their loved ones who are suffering from Alzheimer’s. The way that it works is such that they monitor the use of electrical appliances, which will then alert caregivers if a said appliance has not been turned off.
While there are many apps which are now available for Alzheimer’s patients and their caregivers, one app that particularly stands out is Google Glass.
This app is perfect for patients who begin to forget names and directions. It is worn like any other eye-wear. It makes navigation much easier by sending the location to wherever the patient wants to go. Google Glass allows you to put a picture to a name through its special recognition feature, which ultimately makes it easier to remember names and faces. It is also a great tool for when the patient may wander off or get lost as you can track them through google glass.
It is great to see that there are many different technologies that can be adapted to the needs of someone with dementia. Both patients and their loved ones can now make use of them and kickstart a better living despite having a challenging condition like Alzheimer’s.