Top Wearables for Seniors in 2021
As more and more people turn to wearables to monitor not just their text messages but their health, it makes sense to wonder if wearables can work to monitor, track and improve the health and well-being of the seniors in your life, too.
Wearable technology has come a long way, and seniors and their loved ones deserve to know how to leverage wearables to their benefit.
Wearables for seniors range from transactional — pushing a button to get help — to proactive — monitoring vital signs and other health indicators to give ongoing peace of mind to family members, caregivers, and seniors alike. They can also range in their ability to connect with other devices. Some wearables work alone, while some work as part of an integrated system to tell a story about the wearer’s holistic health and well-being.
Learn about the top wearables available in 2021 and how they can play a vital role in the overall plan for a senior’s care.
Common Types of Wearables
There are several kinds of wearables on the market in 2021 that seniors and their caretakers can use to monitor their health and improve wellness. The most common types include:
- Smartwatches. One of the most ubiquitous wearables on the market right now is the smartwatch. Are they senior-friendly? While some have small interfaces and require tech-savviness, many have features that can help seniors monitor key health markers like breathing rate, heart rate, temperature, blood pressure, sleep, activity, and blood oxygen levels.
These data markers can be used to help seniors and their care professionals to reaffirm that they are on the right track or signal that something is off that requires attention. Smartwatches can also help in emergencies with call detection and auto-calling.
- Jewelry. Jewelry has become a popular wearable choice due to its simplicity. Unlike watches which require the user to interact with an interface, most smart jewelry will perform a small range of functions to help with something specific. Smart jewelry like rings and bracelets can be used to monitor and track steps and activity and can remind you when it’s time to move.
For seniors, the ease of use and the reminders to stay active can help promote a healthy lifestyle. And, while promoting a healthy lifestyle is fundamentally important, seniors and people in their care circle also benefit from the peace of mind knowing that the senior can get assistance in times of need. Therefore, some seniors wear necklaces or pendants that they can activate with a press of a button to call emergency services or people in their care circle.
- Clothing Many brands have found ways to incorporate some of the same health and activity tracking benefits of smartwatches and jewelry into clothing. Like smart jewelry, smart clothing typically focuses on a couple of key metrics to monitor as it relates to health and well-being.
Seniors can search for clothing based on their health or fitness objectives, all the way from overall wellness to avoiding slips and falls due to Parkinson’s disease. You can choose from shirts, jackets, sleeves, socks, and more to find the most comfortable and natural option. One of the benefits of clothing is that pieces can be designed to not just monitoring health and wellness, but treating it with features like compression and heat.
Pros and Cons to Wearables for Seniors
Wearables for seniors — especially those with smart technology — offer significant advantages in terms of safety and peace of mind.
Some pros include:
- Encouraging a healthy and active lifestyle
- Collecting data that can be used to inform the creation and maintenance of care and treatment plans
- Increasing the independence of the senior
- Providing peace of mind to a senior’s care circle
- Real-time monitoring so that you are always up to date on your loved one’s condition
- Ease of use
- Wide effective range (some wearables can connect to the internet, use cellular data, or have a range of hundreds of feet from a primary device)
Some cons for certain wearables include:
- Comfort; certain types of wearables may be less comfortable than others for the senior in your life
- Limited functionality; some wearables may only tell part of the story instead of the whole picture of the senior’s health needed for peace of mind
- Pricing (costs range from $30 per month for medical alert necklaces to hundreds of dollars for an Apple Watch)
Fortunately for seniors and their families, there are solutions available that can enhance the usefulness of wearables, provide data to help the senior’s care circle be more proactive in their support, and help prevent many accidents from occurring. WellAssist, from Routinify, is one such solution.
Wearables and Remote Care Management
While individual wearables can be great on their own to prevent and help with accidents, remote care management platforms like WellAssist that use wearables can provide safety for the senior and reassurance for the senior’s care circle.
WellAssist is a remote care management platform that interacts with a broad range of wearables as part of a holistic health and wellness system. This platform collects data from wearables, medical devices, and in-home sensors. It then combines those capabilities with voice and touch input from the senior to monitor vitals, activity, and well-being throughout the day.
Some of the advantages that WellAssist offers include:
- Proactive monitoring of activities and vitals
- Gathering data through a combination of wearables and displays in a way that’s seamless, intuitive, and non-obtrusive for seniors
- 24/7 access to care providers
- Instantaneous tracking of vitals, nutrition, hydration, activity levels, and sleep routines
- Real-time check-ins with care circle
- Seamless integration with other IoT devices and third-party services like transportation, food delivery, and exercise programs
- Interactive dashboard of important information for quick checkups
- Accident and incident prevention through ongoing monitoring
- Seamless integration with panic buttons and other wearables
If you’d like to learn more about how Routinify’s WellAssist platform can help you manage the care of your loved one, don’t hesitate to reach out to our team of caring experts today. We’d be happy to answer any questions you may have.