Over the past decade, technology has advanced dramatically, and the benefits of technology for seniors shouldn’t be underestimated. It can help older adults stay connected with loved ones and the community, explore new hobbies and improve their safety and security in retirement.
Many older adults are often intimidated or apprehensive about using technology that didn't exist when they were younger or may be worried about cybercrime. However, tech use among older adults is on the rise, with an AARP study suggesting 79% of adults in their 60s and 72% of septuagenarians rely on technology to stay connected with the outside world.
With more seniors embracing technology, we want to take a look at five ways wearable technology, smartphones, laptops, smart speakers and apps can help older adults live fuller lives.
Social media is not just about watching cute cat videos. Apps such as Facebook and Instagram are a great way for older adults to stay connected with family and friends. They let you view photos, see what people are up to and reconnect with those you’ve lost contact with.
These platforms also let older adults build new friendships and socialize in a way they’ve never done before. There are groups for every hobby and interest, where people can chat with like-minded individuals. From sharing crafting ideas or gardening tips to discussing TV shows or books, online groups help adults stay socially engaged.
Everyone loves in-person visits, but they’re not always possible. Through platforms such as WhatsApp and Zoom, older adults can now see and chat with loved ones, no matter where they’re located.
Recent technological innovations have helped improve safety and security in homes, businesses and even retirement communities.
Smart speakers and virtual assistants, such as Siri and Alexa, offer huge benefits to seniors, especially those affected by mobility, dexterity and visual impairments. These clever devices do more than just control thermostats and lighting. Using voice commands, they can:
Smart speakers can even help you find your phone if you’ve misplaced it.
One of the main benefits of technology for seniors is that it can help improve cognition and memory skills. Online brain games can be played on a computer or downloaded to a smartphone or tablet. Jigsaw puzzles, crosswords and games, such as Solitaire and Tetris, involve memory and spatial recognition, while chess, backgammon and Mah-jongg encourage problem-solving and planning.
Older adults can even use technology to stay physically active. Interactive gaming systems, such as the Sony PlayStation or Nintendo Wii, offer motion-controlled games which allow seniors to have fun while doing some light exercise — grandkids love these too! And smartwatches and fitness trackers can record the number of steps you take each day so you can see how active you’ve been over a day, week, month or year.
When you live an idyllic lifestyle in a retirement community and have everything you need on your doorstep, it’s easy to forget the world outside. Technology benefits older adults by providing instant access to news and current affairs.
Although many older adults prefer getting their news from more traditional sources, such as a newspaper or local news channels, smartphones, tablets and computers mean you have all the information you need at your fingertips.
The Village at Providence Point—A National Lutheran Community can help older adults embrace technology through a number of innovations. Residents will be encouraged to use technology to connect with the wider community. With a few tech tips, seniors can find people with similar interests, take up new hobbies and chat with family and friends whenever they choose.
Our fitness center will use smartcard technology so all residents can stay physically active. A portion of the community’s parking area is allocated for green vehicles, and we’re installing dual electric vehicle (EV) charging stations so seniors can charge their cars in designated parking spaces.
Contact us today to find out more about how The Village at Providence Point is focused on helping residents embrace technology for their benefit.