Never more so than now is technology important for people’s lives. We’re currently going through a global pandemic and for many of us, we’re meandering through lockdown after lockdown. This has meant separation from family members in order to prevent the spread of the virus. As a result, people including older adults have become reliant on using technology to help them to communicate. For many people, this would be the norm but for some older adults, they might never have seen valid reasons to bring communications technology into their lives. Isolation is a key problem that arose from these lockdown situations and so some older adults (through the encouragement of younger family members) felt they needed to begin using technology in order to stay in touch with other family members that previously they might have seen physically. This resulted in a massive rise in the purchase of laptops, smartphones and tablets. Of course that was only the beginning. From there, the older adult had to be taught how to use the tech’ and thankfully many carers and family members took the time to show them how to use it. As a result, we have seen another rise in new users on Facebook worldwide for example!
Technology for older adults isn’t just about communications. Tech’ has advanced many other aspects that has repercussions for the lives of the older person. Security devices, cameras and monitors have all advanced thus allowing older adults a little more independence for longer while still having technology in their day to day lives in order to reassure them and their family members that all is well. Many older adults fear the day when they have to go into assisted accommodation and so this type of advancement allows them the option or possibility of staying at their existing and original home for longer that they expected.
Whatever type of technology is incorporated into the older adult’s life, they will need some assistance in getting used to it. Patience therefore is definitely required by a family member or carer to “train” and induct the older adult into use of the tech’. Frustration and confusion can be key barriers that will need to be overcome so it’s important that the training is done in stages so as to not overwhelm them. The older adult needs to be comfortable and confident using the new technology.
The guys from Be Independent Home Care have put together this infographic below that examines the topic. It looks at some related statistics; it details some possible barriers to effective adoption of technology by older adults and it includes some info’ about possible tech’ items that could enhance the life of the older adult. Check it all out below!