It’s no secret that technology is changing how we work, play, and interact with each other. Although tech tools and gadgets also help seniors stay more connected with the world, it can sometimes be difficult for older adults to discover technology on their own, as it may be unfamiliar to them at first.
While the Pew Research Center recently reported that seniors are spending over half their leisure time using smartphones, tablets, or TVs, another study from UC San Diego found that low technology literacy remains one of the biggest obstacles for seniors. When these technologies (and terms) are well-explained by a trusted friend or family member, however, seniors are more likely to take advantage of digital aids.
This is just one area where a skilled in-home caregiver can help improve senior engagement and transform communities. By taking the time to help seniors adapt to new technology, our caregiving professionals at Homewatch CareGivers® can make it easier for them to stay in touch with their families and build new cognitive skills.
Here are a few of the ways our caregivers can help seniors with technological tools:
- Setting up profiles and accounts. Technology makes things a lot more convenient, but the setup process – whether for a brand new iPhone or a Facebook account – can be complicated and even frustrating for some older adults. When caregivers offer to help with the initial setup process, it can encourage seniors to participate from the get-go.
- Helping them download the right smartphone apps. From emergency alerts to medication reminders, smartphones allow seniors to access vital information about their health. This can include caregiving-specific apps as well as games, weather alerts, and communication tools.
- Introducing them to voice activation. Voice assistants like Siri and Alexa provide a convenient way for seniors to use technology – but it may also be difficult for them to get the hang of voice activation at first. By taking initiative and teaching older adults how to use voice activation properly, caregivers can set seniors up for success.
- Discussing privacy and safety concerns. Many seniors report feeling intimidated by the rapid advance of technology, but that isn’t the only concern they have: In fact, the UC San Diego study uncovered that seniors are also highly concerned about their privacy and having control over data. To ease this concern, it’s important to provide opportunities for them to learn about online security – and how to avoid falling prey to spam and phishing attempts.
- Providing emotional support. Even when seniors own smartphones and tablets, they may not always use them, especially if there isn’t anyone nearby to assist. An in-home caregiver can serve a crucial role here, offering light “technical support” and emotional reinforcement for their client when gadgets fail.
Understanding the Role of an In-Home Caregiver
In-home caregivers are uniquely positioned to make a difference in seniors’ lives. As an owner at Homewatch CareGivers, you’ll get to see this process firsthand and serve an instrumental role in shaping the future of home care. From providing personal care assistance to offering emotional support and companionship, our caregivers help their communities in countless ways. If you’re looking for a way to give back, this may be the perfect opportunity for you!
Contact Homewatch CareGivers® today to learn more about our home care franchise opportunity.