The Norman Transcript

Features

May 7, 2013

Assistive technologies help elderly seniors stay at home

NORMAN — Dear Savvy Senior, What types of new home technologies can you recommend to help me keep tabs on my elderly mother? She lives alone, about an hour’s drive from me, and I worry about her safety.

— Concerned Daughter

 

Dear Concerned,

Helping an aging parent remain independent and living in their own home has become a little easier in recent years, thanks to a host of new and improved assistive technology products. Here are some top rated options you should know about. 

 

Medical alerts: If you’re worrying about your mom falling and needing help, one of the most frequently used products over the years for seniors living alone is a medical alert device — also known as a personal emergency response system, or PERS.

 These devices provide a wearable “SOS” button — typically in the form of a necklace pendent or bracelet — and a base station that connects to the home phone line.

At the press of a button, your mom could call and talk to a trained operator through the system’s base station receiver which works like a powerful speaker phone. The operator will find out what’s wrong, and will notify family members, a neighbor, friend or emergency services as needed.

If you’re interested in this, there are dozens of services to choose from including the Philips Lifeline (lifelinesys.com, 800-380-3111) which is the most widely used medical alert service in the U.S. and costs around $35 per month. Phillips also offers a new Auto Alert option (for $48 per month) that has fall detection sensors in the SOS button that can automatically summon help without your mom ever having to press a button. This is helpful because many seniors after a fall become confused or disoriented and forget to press the button. 

If you’re interested in a more budget-friendly option, consider an unmonitored medical alert like the new VTech CareLine Home Safety Telephone System for $120 (vtechphones.com), which doesn’t require professional monitoring services, therefore has no monthly monitoring fees.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Features
  • Norman resident honored as volunteer of the week

    Each week, we recognize a volunteer who is making a difference in the lives of veterans and surviving spouses in the area. This week’s volunteer has been making the trip each week to Goldsby for the last five years. I’m proud to say that ...

    April 23, 2014

  • Air travel tips for seniors with special needs

    Dear Savvy Senior, I would like to fly my elderly parents across the country next month for my daughter’s wedding but have some concerns about the flight. My mom has trouble walking long distances and my dad has COPD and needs an oxygen ...

    April 22, 2014

  • Couple with autistic children lead Thorn Bush Autism group

    For Leah and Christian Eisenbeis raising two children with Autism is not only a challenge but it’s been a blessing, too....

    April 20, 2014

  • Free pressure canner checks offered

    With warmer weather trying to get a grip on April’s temperatures, it’s time to get the dial on your pressure canner checked. This is a free service provided by the Cleveland County Extension Office, 601 E. Robinson St. in Norman....

    April 20, 2014

  • Norman artist pledges to continue painting until colors fade

    About five or six months ago, I came across an article in The Norman Transcript about local artist Almira Hill Grammer, who had a display of her work at the State Capitol....

    April 20, 2014

  • ‘Blood moon’ rising

    I guess we all have one thing in common right now. We survived a “blood moon.” What a whirlwind of a week. It seemed that, like Hillary Clinton, the universe was just tossing shoes at me left and right. Maybe it was a sign I need to slow ...

    April 20, 2014

  • What to know about use of BVO

    Q: I’ve heard about Brominated vegetable oil recently. Could you provide some more information? A: Brominated vegetable oil, also called BVO, is a food additive that is often used to keep citrus flavor emulsified in sodas and sports ...

    April 20, 2014

  • Blessing opens demo garden

    A blustery, gray day didn’t mute enthusiasm for the first Saturday of the spring season April 12 at the Cleveland County Master Gardeners demo gardens and the Norman Farm Market....

    April 20, 2014

  • OHCE members receive awards

    Cleveland County’s Oklahoma Home and Community Education members Carol Doner and Megan Doner were award winners at a recent OHCE District meeting in Mustang....

    April 20, 2014

  • Book signing set

    Author Jerry Webster, of Edmond, will sign copies of his book, “What Brings a Soldier to His Knees,” from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday at Hastings Books, 2300 W. Main St....

    April 20, 2014

Video
Facebook