It’s been called “nana technology.” New high-tech devices are being designed to help keep seniors safe.
One such tool is a GPS device that can be embedded in a shoe sole. The devices can be used to help locate Alzheimer’s patients who wander, and they are more discreet than a wrist or ankle band, which patients may try to remove.
The unobtrusive nature of the new devices is a large part of their appeal. Medical alert devices, which can summon help in the event of a fall or a medical crisis, are often rejected by seniors who do not want the stigma of wearing a bulky pendant.
The new medical alert systems are sleeker, and the GPS capabilities allow them to function anywhere. Older devices only worked within a few hundred feet of the home, sometimes discouraging elders from taking walks that provide needed exercise.
Other systems are available that can monitor a senior’s home, letting caregivers keep track of changes in eating and sleeping habits that may be symptoms of a medical issue.