Technology helps seniors stay in touch with loved ones - no matter where they live! This senior woman uses a tablet to connect with her family.

Technology Helps Seniors Stay in Touch with Loved Ones

Bethesda Health | August 25, 2017

Staying in touch with loved ones and friends used to be a serious problem for seniors.

Thanks to advances in technology, however, it’s easy these days for Mom and Dad to stay in touch with the people most important to them. With new technologies, seniors are able to communicate with their loved ones from the safety and comfort of their own home.

As it continues to become more ingrained in our culture, technology helps seniors stay in touch with their loved ones. Just a few methods that older adults are using to connect include:

New Cell Phones Make Communication Easy for Seniors

While cell phones were at one time intimidating to seniors not accustomed with the new technology, over the past decade they’ve become a lot easier to use and for seniors to stay in touch with their loved ones. Cell phones also have a lot more features than they did just a few years ago.

For example, a text can put families in touch in an instant, no matter how far apart they are. The phone doesn’t have to be used just for phone calls anymore.

In addition, caretakers can easily program a senior’s phone to dial a list of contacts with one touch. For the more advanced senior — iPhones and iPads have voice recognition systems that would allow a person to simply tell the machine who they want to call and it will dial the number for you.

Video Conferencing — the Next Best Thing to Being There

With today’s smartphones and tablets, more and more seniors are using video conferencing to stay in touch with their loved ones

Apple iPhones have a video calling system called FaceTime that allows people to video conference with family or friends as simply as they can make a phone call. Those with other brands of cell phones can enjoy similar teleconferencing through an application such as Skype. Video conferencing is also available on electronic tablets, laptop computers and traditional desktop computers fitted with a video camera. In addition, video conferencing is, in most cases, free of charge.

Video calling has a lot of benefits over voice calls. While it makes seniors happy to see the faces of their grandkids and other family members, it’s also a benefit for the adult children of seniors to be able to see Mom or Dad to make sure they look like they’re doing alright. Are they well groomed? Do they appear to be in good spirits? Regular video communication can be an invaluable tool to keep seniors in touch – and to keep caretakers on top of things if they can’t be there in person every day.

Don’t forget about E-mail

While cell phones and video messaging are comparatively new and exciting, E-Mail is a reliable way to stay in touch on a regular basis.

Seniors are often more comfortable writing letters to their friends than sending a text message. So, an E-mail is a familiar format for them, with the added benefit of being delivered in seconds instead of days. E-mails are also a great way to send pictures and make our seniors feel like they are involved in our day-to-day lives.

Seniors Connect Through Social Media

Social media is allowing seniors to stay in touch with family and old friends, and they may even find new friends! Seniors who are interested in finding people in their area with similar interests or in getting in touch with long-lost friends can make connections by blogging or by joining a social media network like Facebook or Instagram.

Social networking is a great way to contact family members or friends – whether they live across the country or around the globe. In addition to the ability to send electronic messages and comment on other people’s posts, seniors can look at pictures of their friends or family. Social media makes it easy for seniors to share in the moment by watching videos, viewing photos, or reading updates from their grandchildren and great grandchildren. 

Stay Connected with Your Senior Loved Ones Wirelessly

If your senior parent lives alone and you can’t be there because of work commitments or distance, wi-fi video monitoring might be a good idea. Connected securely to your computer, only authorized viewers can see what Mom or Dad are doing at any given time of the day or night.

Many models of wi-fi camera systems are equipped with two-way audio, which allows a caretaker to speak to their loved one in real time to make sure they’re doing well, to call for help if trouble should arise – or just to chit chat throughout the day.

Get In Touch with Your Senior Loved Ones

Technology is making it easier and easier to stay in touch with your senior loved ones – no matter where you are! Take time today to use technology to send a note to your loved ones here at Bethesda, or schedule a tour to see the community they call home firsthand.

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