As adult children, we have been using technological applications to bless the seniors in our lives that live at a distance for a long time. We have become reliant on these tools as we navigate the changing rules of society while socially distancing. This blog talks about how some of these tools can come in useful when you cannot physically visit, shop or deliver to your loved ones and some of tips facing the challenge.
We have all used the internet to order things for others from birthday presents to flowers for delivery. These same types of applications are available online to order razors, band-aids, cereal, fruit or any other needed items for our seniors. In our Independent Living (IL) community, we had a couple of seniors that wanted to go to the bank, get money and then go shopping. The transportation itself was difficult at best! Add a quarantine on top of that, and shopping for our seniors became almost inconceivable. Time to get creative! We were able to guide families to online options for delivery which was a game changer for our residents. Items were at their doorstep in 3 hours.
In some seniors, there is a definite fear of this technology. Most adults all the way up to 60 or even 70 years of age, for the most part, are acclimated to most technology. However, if not, training them can be difficult, time consuming and frustrating for us kids. These too are great tools for those of us that live far distances but may require extra steps. Taking the stress from them and setting it up online so you can do the order placement is sometimes an easier avenue. This way, a plain phone call for them to say, “I need attends and denture cream” may be much simpler and you can order it for them instead. If they can be taught the steps on their own, even better.
As a healthcare professional that has worked around seniors over the years, the one piece of information that is critical for children to understand is: ~The more functionality that a senior loses (i.e. driving, mobility, sight, hearing), the smaller their world becomes.
Enabling a lifestyle with technology that can benefit that world to become easier and larger is always a bonus. We love our parents and they may or may not know how easy some of these applications are, but lending a helping hand can go a long way. For those families we were able to help, the seniors thought it was very much like a magic trick and they were pleased as punch! You too can be that hero.